If you have psoriatic arthritis or another inflammatory condition that causes skin conditions, you may benefit from seeing a local dermatologist. Your local rheumatologist may recommend that you see a dermatologist if you’re experiencing psoriasis symptoms such as redness and scaling, rheumatoid nodules from having rheumatoid arthritis, a lupus rash from systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and others. A local dermatologist is a medical doctor who is specially trained in treating conditions of the hair, skin and nails. Some local dermatologists now perform cosmetic procedures such as laser resurfacing, Botox and dermal fillers.
If you’re experiencing skin conditions related to your rheumatoid arthritis or other inflammatory condition, talk to your local rheumatologist about getting a referral to a local dermatologist. A dermatologist can work with your other healthcare providers, such as a local pharmacist, cardiologist, family physician, registered dietitian, endocrinologist or orthopedic surgeon, to avoid potential arthritis medication interactions and ensure comprehensive care.
There are also prescription and non-prescription topical medicines that can reduce inflammation and itching. Some patients benefit from long-term or short-term steroidal or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications. Common medications for atopic dermatitis include methotrexate, cyclosporine and azathioprine. If those fail, there are new options such called biologic medicines, which are tailored to block the inflammatory pathways or inflammatory molecules that are specifically involved in atopic dermatitis.
Your Local Dermatologist for treatment of atopic dermatitis involves avoiding triggers that make the skin drier and itchier, such as perfumed soaps or exposure to wool. Patients with atopic dermatitis should use moisturizers twice daily. Good skin care is important to decrease the number of bacteria on the skin, and that includes a gentle washing, patting the skin dry, and then putting on the moisturizers to improve that barrier and seal the skin.
There are a wide range of skin conditions that may be temporary or permanent, mild or severe. If you have a skin condition, your primary care provider will likely refer you to a dermatologist.
Common Skin Conditions
• Acne: These pimples, blackheads, whiteheads or cysts/nodules are generally found on the face, shoulders, chest, neck and upper back
• Basal cell carcinoma: A type of skin cancer, it leads to raised pink or red areas with visible blood vessel that may easily bleed or ooze
• Blisters: Clear and fluid-filled sacs may appear alone or in groups anywhere on the body
• Dermatitis: Caused by an allergen, this red, itchy and scaly rash may appear anywhere, often turning into blisters
• Eczema: A chronic skin condition that causes redness, itchiness, and scaly white or yellow patches
• Hives: After exposure to an allergen, the skin breaks out in itchy, red and raised welts that can be painful
• Melanoma: The most serious form of skin cancer, an asymmetrical mole with irregularly shaped edges and multiple colours can appear anywhere on the body
• Melasma: A skin condition that’s common in pregnancy, melasma causes dark patches to appear on the face
• Psoriasis: This chronic skin condition causes scaly and silvery skin patches on the knees, scalp, elbows and lower back
• Rosacea: Triggered by certain foods, alcohol, stress, sunlight or an intestinal bacteria, rosacea is a chronic skin disease that causes raised red bumps, facial flushing, skin sensitivity and dryness
• Squamous cell carcinoma: This skin cancer often occurs in areas exposed to the sun, causing red and scaly patches of skin that grow into red bumps