Print Edition - 2019-06-20  |  Health and Living

Clearing skin doubts through photos


Jun 20, 2019-

More patients are bringing pictures of their skin problems to their dermatologists, which helps the doctors better observe the progression and potentially diagnose the condition, according to a new study.

The authors, a group of skin experts in France, found that almost two-thirds of patients brought pictures with them to appointments for urticaria, or hives.

“Clinical photography has grown enormously since the advent of smartphones,” said Martin Li of the University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire in the United Kingdom, who wasn’t involved with the study.

“As the authors say, sometimes skin conditions come and go, so having confirmed photography helps clinicians assess conditions,” he told Reuters Health by email.

For the study, members of the Urticaria Group of the French Dermatological Society surveyed 311 patients who had appointments for hives in 2017.

Nearly all the patients had wheals, or swollen and itchy bumps, and some of them had angioedema, which is swelling beneath the skin. Only about a third of the patients had skin lesions during the appointment, according to the report in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice.

Photographs could be particularly important for skin concerns, not only because lesions may disappear by the time a patient can get an appointment, but also because they could change due to scratching or other treatments, the study authors wrote.

—© 2019 Reuters

Published: 20-06-2019 10:14

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