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Skin Diseases

Skin Diseases

Skin disorders vary greatly in symptoms and severity. They can be temporary or permanent, and may be painless or painful. Some have situational causes, while others may be genetic. Some skin conditions are minor, and others can be life-threatening.
While most skin disorders are minor, others can indicate a more serious issue. Consult your dermatologist if you think you might have one of these common skin problems.

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Acne

It usually occurs during teenage years due to the hormonal changes among other factors. It may leave behind dark spots, blemishes, reddish patches and scars.

Types

  • Blackheads – small black or yellowish bumps that develop on the skin.
  • Whiteheads – have a similar appearance to blackheads, but may be firmer and will not empty when squeeze.
  • Papules – small red bumps that may feel tender or sore.
  • Nodules – large hard lumps that build up beneath the surface of the skin and can be painful.
  • Pustules – similar to papules, but have pus in the centre.
  • Cysts – the most severe type of spot caused by acne; they’re large pus-filled lumps that look similar to boils and carry the greatest risk of causing permanent scarring.

Treatment

  • Oral and topical antibiotics.
  • Retinoids.
  • Extraction of whiteheads and blackheads.
  • Chemical peels – salicylic acid, black peel, glycolic acid and retinol.
  • Peels.
  • Lasers.
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Eczema

Eczema is a very common skin condition that causes itchy, red, dry, and irritated skin. The condition is also called atopic dermatitis. It can affect any age group children, adults and old people. Most types of Eczema cause dry, itchy skin and rashes on the face, inside the elbows and behind the knees, and on the hands and feet. Scratching the skin can cause it to turn red, and to swell and itch even more. It is not contagious. and is likely to be  caused by both genetic and environmental factors. Eczema may get better or worse over time and is often a long-lasting disease.

Treatments

  • Oral antihistamines
  • Skin creams andmoisterisers
  • Light therapy
  • Good skin care. 
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Allergies/Hives

Hives are red and itchy bumps on the skin. They are the result of an allergic reaction to certain allergens These allergens cause the body to release chemicals that make the skin swell up. In rare cases, hives can cause a dangerous swelling in your airways, making it hard to breathe causing a medical emergency. They may be caused due to Drugs or food infections, infestations, Contact ants, Inhalants and stress.

Treatment

Hives sometimes go away on their own, but are usually treated with antihistamines or a shot.

Psoriasis

Psoriasis is an chronic autoimmune condition that causes cells to develop rapidly on the skin. This overgrowth can lead to thick, scaly plaques that may itch or cause discomfort. Inflammation and redness around the scales are fairly common. Typical psoriatic scales are whitish-silver and develop in thick, red patches. Sometimes, these patches will crack and bleed. Psoriasis is not contagious. This skin condition can’t be passed from one person to another.
In Psoriasis, scales typically develop on joints, such as elbows, tail bone and knees. However, they may develop anywhere on the body like hands. Feet, neck, scalp, nails, genital areas.

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Treatment

  • Treatment will depend on the type and severity of the condition.
  • The main options include medications and phototherapy.
    People with psoriasis should use emollients to keep the skin moisturized when using other treatments. This precaution can help reduce the itching and irritation and may also reduce the number of lesions or plaques that develop.

Rosacea

Rosacea is a chronic inflammatory skin condition that usually affects the face. It may be mistaken for acne, eczema, or an allergic skin reaction. The main symptoms of rosacea are facial flushing, irritated skin, blushing easily and eye problems.
Rosacea is a common skin condition more in females than males and it usually develops after the age of 30.

Some foods and beverages can worsen the symptoms, such as dairy products, spicy foods, caffeine, and alcohol. Sun exposure can also make the symptoms worse.

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Treatments

There is currently no cure for rosacea, but the treatment helps to relieve the symptoms of rosacea. People can treat the symptoms using combination of creams ,medications and lifestyle modifications.

Bacterial Infections

Bacterial skin infections develop when bacteria enter through hair follicles or through small breaks in the skin that result from scrapes, punctures, surgery, burns, sunburn, animal or insect bites, wounds, and pre-existing skin They often begin as painful small, red bumps that slowly increase in size.

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Fungal Infections

A fungal infection, also called mycosis, is a skin disease caused by a fungus. Fungi live everywhere-water, soi, plants and on the human body. Since fungi thrive in warm, moist environments, fungal skin infections can often develop in sweaty or damp areas that don’t get much airflow. Some examples include the feet, groin, and folds of skin.
Often, these infections appear as a scaly rash or discoloration of the skin that is often itchy. They are contagious means fungal skin infections can often spread through direct contact. This can include coming into contact with fungi on clothing or other items, or on a person or animal.

Treatment

A two drug combination of bactericidal antibiotics is recommended. 

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Iontophoresis – the hands and feet are submerged in a bowl of water. A painless electric current is passed through the water. Most patients need two to four 20-30 minute treatments.

Botulinum toxin (Botox injections) – Botox injections block the nerves that trigger the sweat glands. Patients with hyperhidrosis may need several injections for effective results.

Anticholinergic drugs – these medications inhibit the transmission of parasympathetic nerve impulses. Patients generally notice an improvement in symptoms within about 2 weeks.

ETS (Endoscopic thoracic sympathectomy) – this surgical intervention is only recommended in severe cases which have not responded to other treatments. . The nerves that carry messages to the sweat glands are cut.
ETS may be used to treat hyperhidrosis of the face, hands or armpits.

Bacterial Infections

Bacterial skin infections develop when bacteria enter through hair follicles or through small breaks in the skin that result from scrapes, punctures, surgery, burns, sunburn, animal or insect bites, wounds, and preexisting skin 
They often begin as painful small, red bumps that slowly increase in size.

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Types

  • Cellulitis: Infection of the skin and tissue beneath the skin
  • Folliculitis: Hair root infection of the skin resulting in red ,pus filled and painful
  • Skin abscess: Pus filled pockets in the layers in of the skin
  • Lymphadenitis: Inflammation of the lymphnodes which become swollen and tender
  • Impetigo: Common in infants,characterized by tiny papules with honey coloured crust.

Treatment

Involves oral and topical antibiotics 

Fungal Infections

A fungal infection, also called mycosis, is a skin disease caused by a fungus.
Fungi live everywhere-water,soil ,plants and on the human body.

Since fungi thrive in warm, moist environments, fungal skin infections can often develop in sweaty or damp areas that don’t get much airflow. Some examples include the feet, groin, and folds of skin.
Often, these infections appear as a scaly rash or discoloration of the skin that is often itchy.
They are contagious means fungal skin infections can often spread through direct contact. This can include coming into contact with fungi on clothing or other items, or on a person or animal.

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Types

  • Athlete’s foot (tinea pedis): The most common type of fungal infection, this condition often spreads when people walk barefoot in public bathrooms or locker rooms. The skin between your toes turns white and starts to peel.
  • Nail fungus (onychomycosis): It usually affects the toenails, which become yellow and thick and break easily.
  • Jock itch (tinea cruris): A rash of the groin area, jock itch affects more men than women.
  • Scalp ringworm (tinea capitis): This rash occurs mostly in children. It causes hair loss, but with the right treatment, the hair usually grows back.
  • Ringworm (tinea corporis): Tinea corporis, is another name of ringworm but it’s not a worm, rather a fungal infection that develops on the skin in the form of circles and is scaly,reddish in colour.

Treatment

  • Avoid hot and humid conditions
  • Taking oral and topical antifungals

Vitiligo( White Patch Disease)

What is vitiligo?
Vitiligo is a chronic (long-lasting) disorder that causes patches of skin to lose pigment or color and turn white. This happens when melanocytes – skin cells that make pigment – are attacked and destroyed, causing the skin to turn a milky-white color. If you have vitiligo in a place that has hair, the hair on your body may also turn white.

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Causes

The cause of vitiligo is unknown, but research suggests that vitiligo may be an autoimmune disease.
Anyone can get vitiligo, and it can develop at any age. The first signs of vitiligo are white patches on the skin, which can develop anywhere on the body, including on the face, arms, hands, genitals, and buttocks. However, for many people with vitiligo, the white patches begin to appear before age 20, and can start in early childhood.

Vitiligo seems to be more common in people who have a family history of the disorder or who have certain autoimmune diseases.

Types

Which type you have depends on where you have it.
• Generalized is the most common type. This is when discolored patches show up all over body.
• Segmental is when your vitiligo is confined to one area of body, like face or  hands.

• Focal happens when the discoloration stays in one spot and doesn’t spreads.
• Mucosal affects mucous membranes of the mouth and/or the genitals.
• Universal another rare type. In this type at least 80% of your skin is discolored.

Treatment

Camouflage therapy:
• Using sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher.Use of sunscreens minimizes tanning, thereby limiting the contrast between affected and normal skin.
• Makeups help camouflage depigmented areas.
• Hair dyes if vitiligo affects the hair.
• Depigmentation therapy with the drug monobenzone can be used if the disease is extensive. This medication is applied to pigmented patches of skin and will turn them white to match the areas of vitiligo.

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Topiacal therapy
• Topical creams such as corticosteroids,Tacrolimus or
• Topical Vit D analogs (which are synthetic versions of the vitamin)
• Topical immunomodulators

Light therapy 
• Combination therapy with UVA light and the oral medication psoralen, which may be especially effective if you have large areas of skin affected by vitiligo

Surgery 
• Skin grafting,punch grafting,blister grafting
• Tattooing ( micropigmantation specially on lip areas)

Counseling:
• Vitiligo can cause psychological distress and has the ability to affect a person’s outlook and social interactions.Hence it is advisable to seek a help of a professional counsellor or join the support group.

Dark Circles/Periorbital Hyperpigmentation (POH)

Periorbital hyperpigmentation(POH) or simply known as dark circles is an ill-defined entity and is a major cosmetic concern. It may occur in the young and old, however the development of dark circles under the eyes in any age is of great aesthetic concern because it may depict the individual as sad, tired, stressed, and old.

Other aesthetic changes such as thinning, wrinkling, loosening and sagging of skin, fluid retention, excess fat accumulation, occuring due to ageing, photoaging, gravity, etc. make the person look older than the actual age.

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Causes

Exact reasons of dark circles is unknown.
Many endogenous and exogenous factors can contribute to POH including 
• genetics
• postinflammatory hyperpigmentation (allergies, periorbital eczema)
• drug-related causes (vasodilatory medications, glaucoma medications such as latanoprost, hormonal therapy)
• procedures (blepharoplasty, rhinoplasty, chemical peels)
• inflammation and loss of support to cutaneous microvascular structure due to photoageing
• Disorders causing fluid retension and palpabral edema( thyroid disorder,cardiac problems,renal problems )
• Shadowing effect
• environmental / lifestyle changes (sun exposure, lack of sleep, stress, alcohol, caffeine, smoking).
• Deficiency of vitamin K

Clinical Features

• It presents as bilateral homogeneous macular or pigmented patches involving the lower eyelids and infra-orbital regions.
• It can also extend to upper eyelids lateral nasal root, and sometimes surrounding eyebrows, temporal and malar areas.
• There is a colour difference between the eyelid skin and the remaining facial skin.

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Management

Involves identification and treating each of the contributing factors.

• Camouflage 
• Treatment and control of underlying factors
• Skin lightening agents such as arbutin,kojic acid,topical retinoic acid 
• Chemical peels
• Botox and hyaluronic acid fillers 
• Mesotherapy 
• Laser therapy
• Change in lifestyle with adequate sleep and stress reducing strategies help in managing POH.

All these as a monotherapy or combination therapy can give desired results