Avail Dermatology

Arrival of the Xtrac Laser

Dr. Mark Ling and Avail Dermatology are pleased to announce the arrival of the Xtrac laser. Xtrac is an exciting new technology, which uses a laser to generate an intense beam of ultraviolet light (“UV”). This can be used to treat resistant cases of psoriasis, as well as other conditions including vitiligo and alopecia areata.

It has been known for decades that ultraviolet light, typically in the form of natural sunlight, was beneficial for the treatment of psoriasis. For many years, dermatologists offered “phototherapy,” the use of artificial ultraviolet light, as a way to treat the more severe cases. Typically, the patient would stand naked in a “booth,” similar to a tanning booth, and would have the skin bathed in intense ultraviolet light. Over time the psoriasis would gradually thin and eventually clear entirely. However, over time, serious limitations to conventional phototherapy became recognized. Treatments were long, often 10-20 minutes standing in a totally enclosed, hot, viewless booth. Many treatments were needed: often 30 to 40 treatments would be needed to clear psoriasis. This presented huge time problems for an increasingly busy patient population. And most of all, the recognition of the role that ultraviolet light plays in the development of skin cancer, including potentially deadly melanoma, made people more reluctant, particularly since they had to expose their entire body to UV just to treat the small patches of psoriasis.

The development of the Xtrac laser now allows us to benefit from the effects of UV on psoriasis, while eliminating the majority of complaints about phototherapy. The laser is able to generate an intense beam of UV, exposing only a small, postage stamp-sized area of skin with each “pulse” of UV light. Thus, the treatments are entirely confined to only the areas of psoriasis, eliminating the risk of widespread skin cancer. This also allows the use of much higher doses of UV, meaning that patients are seeing significant improvement with as few as 6-10 treatments, with complete clearing often after just 10-20 total treatments, The treatments are also fast, often no more than a minute or two, allowing patients to come and go quickly.

Perhaps the greatest advantage of Xtrac is that patients who do clear their skin will on average have a period of 4-6 months of remission, during which their skin stays clear with no treatrments needed. For patients tired of messy, time-consuming, expensive, and less than effective topical creams and ointments, this can be a real breakthrough, allowing them to lead much more normal lives, no longer having to cover up even in the heat of summer.

For more information, contact Avail Dermatology and ask about the Xtrac. We are excited that we are able to offer this to our psoriasis patients.

The following link offers more information as well: http://www.xtraclaser.com/resources_linktous.htm

Avail Dermatology

Dr. Marcet Recognized during Fayette Care Clinic Annual Gala

Dr. Steven Marcet was one of the volunteers recognized during the Fayette Care Clinic Annual Gala held on March 5th. The Fayette Care Clinic offers health care services to Fayette County Residents who are uninsured, and would otherwise go without healthcare. Dr. Marcet has given his time on a monthly basis since 2009 by providing dermatology services to those in need. Here’s a link to a wonderful video about the clinic. Watch for a great interview with a patient of our Dr. Marcet, just past the halfway point of the video. http://vimeo.com/20759468

Avail Dermatology

Dr. Mark Ling Gives Presentations on Psoriasis

Dr. Ling gave a successful presentation last October in Sweden to a prestigious group of dermatologists from Sweden, Denmark, Finland, and even Iceland. As a recognized expert in the use of new medications to treat severe psoriasis, he was invited to travel to present his thoughts about how we can choose, and safely use, the latest generation of psoriasis therapies. For Dr. Ling, the particularly rewarding aspect of this subject is the fact that he and the MedaPhase staff were involved in the original research and development of all of the new drugs now on the market.

Dr. Ling then followed this with another presentation this February, this time at the Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Dermatology. With an audience of well over 100 dermatologists and researchers from the pharmaceutical industry, he reviewed some of the crucial data about the safe use of biologic therapies for psoriasis, concentrating on information that is not widely known to most practicing dermatologists, By doing so, he was able to analyze the long term risks and benefits of these drugs, laying to rest many misconceptions about these drugs, such as the notion that they “cause cancer.”

Dr. Ling continues to play an important role in psoriasis therapy, as the research group is about to start enrolling psoriasis patients in two new studies testing the latest generation of psoriasis treatments from Celgene and Pfizer.

Avail Dermatology

Dr. Buckthal gives radio interview on skin cancer

Dr. Jill Buckthal, dermatologist and dermatopathologist for Avail Dermatology, was a guest on FM 92.5 “The Bear,” the Southside’s premiere Rock station. Dr. Buckthal addressed the dramatic increase in skin cancers seen in the U.S., and detailed the factors in this growing epidemic. She discussed the types of skin cancer, potential complications from these cancers, and the treatments currently in use. Dr. Buckthal commented that this type of outreach using media channels that are frequented by younger audiences is crucial, as it is behavior in the younger years that ultimately leads to the development of skin cancer. Youth-oriented media like FM 92.5 are a perfect vehicle for reaching this crucial population before they become skin cancer victims.

Avail Dermatology

Botox® – from a Hollywood treatment to a household name

In the last several years, Botox® has gone from a Hollywood treatment to a household name. According to Allergan, Inc., the maker of Botox®, approximately 11.8 million Botox® Cosmetic treatments have been performed since 2002, making Botox® Cosmetic one of the most popular non-surgical cosmetic treatments in the United States.

Utilized since the 1970’s to treat a variety of medical conditions, Botox® Cosmetic was not approved by the FDA for cosmetic use until 2002. Both women and men alike are benefiting from this quick cosmetic procedure for a fraction of the cost of plastic surgery.

Stop and take a look in the mirror and frown like you are mad. What do you see? The contraction of the muscles causes vertical lines or “11’s” to form between the brows. We often contract these muscles when we are concentrating, frowning, or squinting. This repetitive muscle movement over time begins to form lines that are present at rest. Botox® Cosmetic works by blocking nerve impulses in selected muscles injected between the brows, thus reducing muscle activity and the ability of the muscles between the brows to contract with such strength to create the strong vertical lines.

Within a matter of minutes and a few small injections, the procedure is complete. The cosmetic effects of Botox® Cosmetic are not immediate, but usually take affect within 4 to 7 days, up to 2 weeks for some individuals. A common concern for patients considering Botox® Cosmetic is that this procedure will cause them to look “frozen “ or “without expression”. This is simply not the case. Your brows will still have movement following the procedure, with the vertical lines between the brows or “11’s” noticeably improved. Results vary for each person, but typically last up to 4 months.

For additional safety information on Botox® Cosmetic you can visit http://www.botoxcosmetic.com

Avail Dermatology

The Skin Spa Welcomes the HydraFacial

The Skin Spa at Avail Dermatology continues to lead the way in cosmetic dermatology procedures by offering the widely publicized HydraFacial to its list of services.

According to Edge Systems, the Hydra Facial is the newest treatment in non-laser skin resurfacing. The HydraFacial treats patients who suffer from fine lines, wrinkles, congested pores, acne, and oily skin. It is the only treatment that combines simultaneous cleansing, exfoliating, hydrating, and extracting to produce bright and glowing skin. The HydraFacial is a breakthrough treatment in asthetic technology and has been featured on ABC, NBC, FOX news, and The Doctors.

The Skin Spa offers the HydraFacial as an in-office-procedure. It can be done in less than one hour and provides immediate results with little to no downtime. Compared to aggressive laser resurfacing procedures, the HydraFacial is also priced affordably. To introduce the procedure, the Skin Spa is extending a special offer of one free treatment with the purchase of two at regular price, through the end of October. The procedure provides maximum results with a series of six treatments.

“We are excited to welcome a treatment that is suitable for all skin types, yet, still extremely effective in producing immediate results to target concerns, such as acne and hyperpigmentation.” Trisha Kennedy, MSN, FNP-BC, NP-C, Director of The Skin Spa, said.

The Skin Spa is south Atlanta’s premiere center for skin, health, and beauty. The staff combines medical, cosmetic, laser and spa services to provide a one-of-a-kind facility for cosmetic procedures. By working synergistically with the medical staff The Skin Spa far exceeds the expectations of a typical medical spa.

Avail Dermatology

Dr. Ling to lecture in Sweden

The EADV is the European Academy of Dermatology, the organization representing dermatologists across Europe. Similar to the American Academy of Dermatology, the EADV hosts an annual meeting, the most important European dermatology meeting. This year, Dr. Ling has been invited to participate in the activities surrounding the meeting, and will be travelling in October to Gothenburg, Sweden. There, he will lecture to European dermatologists on the management of severe psoraisis, with particular attention directed towards safety issues with the new biologic therapies. Dr. Ling is enthused by the opportunity to discuss a subject which is of great importance for him, and also to interact and learn from dermatologists from many countries. He hopes to bring home additional tips and strategies which will help his large practice of patients with chronic and severe psoriasis.

Avail Dermatology

Avail Dermatology: We are teachers too.

One distinguishing characteristic of Avail Dermatology is a longstanding commitment to teaching and training others. Our providers are consistently invited to teach and train medical providers. These invitations are in recognition of their special skills and expertise.

Sandra Morris, PA-C, has been a lecturer at the prestigious Emory University Physician’s Assistant Program. She presented two lectures to the Physician Assistant students. Drawing on her background as a PA-C and a microbiologist, she lectured on “The Fungus Among Us”, discussing fungal infections of the skin, and gave an “Introduction to Infectious Disease.”

Sandra has been invited back to Emory University to present lectures on “Acute and Chronic Renal Failure”, “Skin and Soft Tissue Infections” and “Electrolyte Disorders”.

Sandra has received other honors as well. We are proud to note that The Georgia Association of Physician Assistants (GAPA) invited Sandra to speak at the national, annual Winter Continuing Education Conference, held at the Cobb Galleria in Atlanta, GA. Over 200 Physician Assistants were in attendance. The presentation was entitled “If Pigs Could Fly…A Review of Swine Flu and Travel Medicine”. GAPA is a leader among physician assistant state associations in providing relevant, up-to-date continuing education for physician assistants in all areas of primary care.

Avail Dermatology’s providers believe that by teaching others, we also ensure that we have the most up-to-date and innovative approaches to making sure your skin is healthy. Come see what we’ve learned!

Avail Dermatology

Is a Toenail Fungus Infection Preventing Your From Wearing Sandals?

Toenail fungus infection (“onychomycosis”) is an extremely common infection of the nails by fungus. The infection is stubborn, difficult to treat, and results in unsightly and often painful toenails.

Treatments are often slow, time-consuming and far from 100% effective.
If you have this difficult to treat condition, and are between the ages of 18 and 70, you may be eligible to participte in a research study conducted by Dr. Mark Ling, testing a topical investigational medication for the treamtent of toenail fungus infection. All study visits and study medication are provided at no cost to you and qualifed participants may be eligible for compensation for time and travel.

Avail Dermatology

Dr. Ling to Lecture at National Dermatology Meeting in March

Dr. Mark Ling has again been asked to lecture at the Upcoming 2009 American Academy of Dermatology Annual Meeting in Miami, Fl. The “AAD” is the national organization for dermatologists, and it sponsors this annual meeting, by far the most-attended dermatology meeting nationwide. The goal of the meeting is to present the latest in-depth imedical nformation to practicing dermatologists.

Dr. Ling will lecture on one of his personal areas of interest, the use of biologic drugs to treat severe psoriasis. Biologic drugs are the new generation of injected biotech drugs, which have been a major advance in psoriasis therapy. His interest arises out of the important role that he and his staff played in the development of many of these new breakthrough drugs, such as Enbrel, Humira, and Stelara.

The specific topic for this year’s lecture focuses on the safety of these new drugs. As important as it is for a drug to work, it must also be safe. Biologic drugs have been subjected to the most intensive scrutiny in pharmaceutical history, and thus there are hundreds of articles and presentations every year presenting safety information. Dr. Ling has reviewed this information and will present his analysis of the risks and benefits of these new drugs. His lectures in the past have been highly rated and consistently “sold out.” The advantage for Dr. Ling’s patients is that he can speak confidently and in great depth to patients when questions arise about the treatment of psoriasis.