The skin is the largest organ in the body and one of its main functions is to provide protection. For the average sized adult, the skin actually covers an area of between 16 and 22 square feet, and it is about 2.5mm in thickness, or about one-tenth of an inch.
Dermatology is the study of the skin, as well as the hair and the nails. Doctors that specialize in dermatology, known as dermatologists, treat thousands of different conditions that are both medical as well as cosmetic in nature.
Appointments and Referrals
For patients in Salt Lake City, it is possible to schedule an appointment with a dermatologist on your own, or you can also receive a referral from your doctor. Typically doctor referrals occur when there is a health issue with the skin, nails or hair that is not responding to the treatment the primary care physician has prescribed.
However, when a patient makes an appointment with the dermatology department, it may be for a wide number of reasons, one of which can be for aesthetic purposes. In some situations, the patient may come in with what they think is a cosmetic issue, only to find out that it is actually a skin disease that is at the root of their problem.
For patients in Salt Lake City, it is important to review your insurance policy to see if you require a referral from your doctor for insurance to cover the cost of the visit.
Common Conditions Dermatologists Treat
Any conditions of the nails, skin, hair or even the lining of the mouth, nose or eyelids may be seen by the dermatology department.
Common health conditions include:
- Skin cancers or skin cancer screenings
- Changes in the texture of the skin or changes in moles or pigmentation of the skin
- Hives and rashes
- Fungal infections of the skin or nails
- Burns and skin grafts
Cosmetic treatments of the skin, hair and nails are also within the scope of the treatments offered by these specialized healthcare professionals. This can include addressing the effects of acne and removing scars, correcting wrinkles and age spots, and improving skin tone and elasticity that can decrease with aging.
Some dermatologist in Salt Lake City are also trained in Mohs surgery. This is a specialized type of chemosurgery that removes a minimal layer of skin, which has tested for cancer cells, and removes only the amount of tissue required. This greatly reduces healing time and also prevents scarring to the face and areas that are visible.