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April 2006 Briefing - Dermatology

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Dermatology for April 2006. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal articles, as well as the FDA approvals and regulatory changes that are the most likely to affect clinical practice.

Skin Peptide Deficiency Linked to Herpes Susceptibility

FRIDAY, April 28 (HealthDay News) -- The cathelicidin peptide LL-37 shows activity against herpes simplex virus, suggesting that increasing production of skin LL-37 might be a way to prevent eczema herpeticum (ADEH) in atopic dermatitis patients who are deficient in the peptide, according to a study in the April issue of the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.

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Medical Students Need More Training in Skin Cancer Exams

THURSDAY, April 27 (HealthDay News) -- One in four medical students has never been trained to, or performed, a skin cancer examination, and less than one-third feel confident in their own skill at performing such exams, according to a report in the April issue of Archives of Dermatology. Medical students need more consistent training in performing skin cancer examinations, the study authors conclude.

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Asians with Large Nevi May Have Low Melanoma Risk

THURSDAY, April 27 (HealthDay News) -- Although white patients with large congenital melanocytic nevi (LCMN) can have a lifetime melanoma risk as high as 10 percent, none of 36 Asians with LCMN developed cancer after almost 17 years, according to the results of a study published in the May issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

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Daily Combing of African Hair May Maintain Length

THURSDAY, April 27 (HealthDay News) -- African hair tends to break off with combing, and daily combing may have the effect of a regular haircut, according to a report published in the May issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

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Skin Cancer Patients Detect 44 Percent of Own Melanomas

THURSDAY, April 27 (HealthDay News) -- Skin cancer patients detect almost half of their melanomas themselves, while physicians find about one quarter of cases, according to the results of an Australian study published in the May issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. The study was conducted in a region that has been encouraged to check for melanomas for many years, the authors note.

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Melanocytic Nevi in Children May Change Over Time

WEDNESDAY, April 26 (HealthDay News) -- Unlike in adults, melanocytic nevi with eccentric foci of hyperpigmentation, or the "Bolognia sign," may change morphologically over time in children, according to a case report in the April issue of the Archives of Dermatology. In some cases, it may be possible to avoid surgical excision of the nevus, the report suggests.

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Editorial

Burrowed Tick Larvae Can Lead to Multiple Pruritic Papules

TUESDAY, April 25 (HealthDay News) -- The larvae of ticks can burrow under the skin and lead to multiple pruritic papules, according to a case report in the April issue of the Archives of Dermatology. The diagnosis can be difficult, particularly in patients with a large number of lesions, the report indicates.

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Biopsy Techniques for Actinic Keratoses Differ by Specialty

TUESDAY, April 25 (HealthDay News) -- Plastic surgeons tend to choose excisional biopsies while dermatologists are more likely to use shave biopsies for the histopathological examination of actinic keratoses, according to a study in the April issue of Archives of Dermatology.

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Melanoma Recurs More Often Than Thought

TUESDAY, April 18 (HealthDay News) -- Melanomas may recur more frequently than previous studies have shown, according to research published in the April issue of the Archives of Dermatology.

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UV Tanning Routinely Marketed to Teens

TUESDAY, April 18 (HealthDay News) -- Tanning parlors, including those that use carcinogenic ultraviolet (UV) radiation, habitually target teens by advertising in school newspapers and offering discounts and special promotions, according to a study in the April issue of the Archives of Dermatology.

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Low-Dose Isotretinoin Does Not Prevent Head, Neck Tumors

WEDNESDAY, April 5 (HealthDay News) -- Despite encouraging results from using high doses of the synthetic vitamin A derivative isotretinoin to treat patients with head and neck squamous cell cancer (HNSCC), the drug has no impact on reducing the rate of second primary tumors when administered in low doses, according to a study in the April 5 issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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UV Exposure May Have Opioid-Like Effect on Frequent Tanners

MONDAY, April 3 (HealthDay News) -- Opioid-blocking drugs produce withdrawal-like symptoms in some frequent tanners, lending support to the hypothesis that ultraviolet (UV) light produces endorphins and that tanning may be addictive as a result, according to a study in the April issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

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