Thursday, July 31, 2014

Botox For Depression- New Medical Insight

Depression is a growing medical concern, with major depressive disorder being the leading cause of disability for Americans aged 15-44. While conventional medications and therapy work for some depression is not a 'one size fits all' condition. Medical teams and researchers have continued to study depression in order to evolve treatment methods, prescriptions and ways to manage this imbalance for many of those suffering without a solution.

Recent studies are suggesting Botox as an effective treatment for Major Depression Disorder. "I know for sure that my patients feel better emotionally after having Botox.  I don’t medically think that Botox can ever be the principle treatment for clinical depression, but I am encouraged in the findings of using it as an adjunct therapy; and a way to make everyone feel a little bit better about life," says Dr. Germain.

The following article by WebMD Health News writer Carolina Cassels, offers insight to this new use of the common wrinkle reducer, Botox- What are your thoughts?

More Evidence Botox Works for Depression
by Caroline Cassels
A single injection of Botox, which is typically used to improve the appearance of facial wrinkles, may be an effective treatment for depression.

Investigators at the Hannover Medical School in Germany found that treating the facial muscles involved in emotion with Botox eases symptoms of depression.

"Our emotions are expressed by facial muscles, which in turn send feedback signals to the brain to reinforce those emotions. Treating facial muscles with botulinum toxin interrupts this cycle," study investigator Prof. Tillmann Kruger said at a press conference at the American Psychiatric Association's 2014 Annual Meeting.

Novel Approach

According to the investigators, positive effects on mood have been seen in patients who've had Botox treatment for the frown lines in the area above the nose and between the eyebrows. To confirm these results, Kruger and colleague M. Axel Wollmer, MD, from the Asklepios Clinic North Ochsenzoll in Hamburg, Germany, did research on Botox injection as an additional treatment for major depression.

A total of 30 patients with high levels of chronic and treatment-resistant depression were enrolled in the study. Patients were randomly assigned to receive a single injection of Botox or a single injection of saline placebo ("fake treatment").

Six weeks after a single treatment, the Botox group had an average 47.1% reduction in depression symptoms vs. 9.2% in the placebo group.

The investigators found that the effect size was even larger at the end of the study. Improvement was also reflected when other tools were used to measure depression symptoms.

Kruger said Botox may offer a "novel, effective, well-accepted, and economic therapeutic tool for the treatment of major depression."

These findings have since been repeated in two other studies.

The researchers are also testing Botox's therapeutic potential in other psychiatric disorders.

Jeffrey Borenstein, MD, president and CEO of the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation in New York City, said at the press conference that pursuing new treatments for depression is "crucial."

Borenstein said he'd like to see this line of research pursued in studies that include larger numbers of patients.

Dr. Kruger, Dr. Wollmer, and Dr. Borenstein report no relevant financial conflicts of interest.

These findings were presented at a medical conference. They should be considered preliminary as they have not yet undergone the "peer review" process, in which outside experts scrutinize the data prior to publication in a medical journal.

SOURCE:American Psychiatric Association's 2014 Annual Scientific Meeting, New York, May 3-7, 2014.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Suffering From Summer Time Dry Skin?

Has your dry winter skin rolled over to the warm summer months? Dry skin can be frustrating, especially when you are constantly moisturizing with no results. Review our list of sneaky dry skin culprits to see if you are inadvertently feeding your irritation.

#1 Fragrance. No, we aren't saying not to spritz yourself with your favorite perfume; this is referring to the hidden scents in many of your day-to-day routines.  Facial lotions, body lotions, body washes, detergents, deodorants, fabric softeners, fabric sprays and so forth can all contain fragrance which tends to irritate already dry skin or make it worse. Check the ingredients list of your items and eliminate any products containing the word fragrance. We often suggest ‘free’ or ‘clear’ items and non-fragrance skin care products. *Don’t want to throw away your delicious country cucumber melon lotion? Opt for high quality products with natural scents containing ingredients like shea butter, coco bean, honey or vanilla.

#2 Soap. Nothing strips skin of moisture faster than cleansing. This is why those who tend to shower multiple times a day or continuously wash their hands tend to suffer from dry skin. Use gentle (and fragrance free) products, especially hand and body soaps, and moisturize with a high quality lotion/oil within 10-20 min. of washing. *Fabric Softeners can also contain high amounts of soap, which can irritate dry skin, always check ingredients.

#3 Hard Water. Hard water contains a high concentration of minerals like magnesium, lead, and zinc. These minerals can leave a film on skin that causes dryness.  Investing in a home filtration system can get pricey- Dr. Dennis Gross, NYC Dermatologist, suggests a great alternative- add products high in vitamin A and C to your beauty routine to counteract the film left by hard water.

#4 Chlorine & Salt Water. Our skin is only made to withstand being in water for certain lengths of time. Whether swimming in a pool or ocean, taking a bubble bath or a long shower water can ultimately strip the natural oil barriers protecting our skin. During the summer, especially in coastal regions like Charleston, water activities can cause or worsen dry skin symptoms. To make things worse, both, chlorine and salt water dehydrate your skin intensifying the affects of the water. *Moisturize after a long swim, as you would after a shower, to best control the effects. Those with severe dry skin can apply lipid based products that will actually block the damage from prolonged water exposure.

#5 Air Conditioning. Yes, it is a fact that both heat and air conditioning can harmfully affect the moisture levels of your skin. Air condition pulls humidity out of the air causing, worsening or irritating dry skin. *Running a humidifier in your bedroom, or even your office, (through summer and winter) can help to balance the moisture in the air and relieve dry skin.

If your dry skin doesn't improve with these lifestyle alterations, worsens or becomes painful come visit us at Germain Dermatology. Dr. Germain and staff are experts in skin care and will help you get to the root of your dry skin! Call today 843-881-4440

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Don't Miss Double Reward Points with Brilliant Distictions

NOW through AUGUST 28th get DOUBLE points on every treatment or product with our Brilliant Distinctions Reward Program. 
Just login and download the coupon to earn your double rewards! 

What is Brilliant Distinctions? BD is the only program that rewards you with instant savings on Allergan facial treatments and products, like Botox, Latisse, and Juvederm. Anytime you recieve BOTOX®, JUVÉDERM® XC Injectable Gel Filler, LATISSE®, SkinMedica® products or VIVITÉ® Skin Care products you will be able to earn points, later redeemable for future treatments.

Not registered? It's simple! Just visit Brilliant Distinctions online and sign up as a new user. You will be immediately enrolled to receive points for your purchases with us, at Germain Dermatology.

*Now you can earn even more with the NEW Brilliant Distinctions Mall. Everytime you shop online with participating retail stores- such as GAP, Ann Taylor and J. Crew- you will receive points toward your Brilliant Distinctions Program, allowing even more savings on the treatments you love!
  


Monday, July 7, 2014

411 on Heat Rash

The summer sun is out in full force, and while we caution you against the harmful effects of UV rays there is another culprit this time of year… heat rash. Severe outbreaks can look scary and cause intense itching, as well as a prickly sensation on the skin. However, very rarely do these annoying rashes need medical attention, and, no matter how frightening they look, they are rather common and simple in nature if you know what you are dealing with.

Many patients assume heat rash comes from sunburn, but this is not the case. A heat rash occurs when your sweat glands become clogged, thus not allowing the moisture to dry from your skin and causing a blister like rash. There are times when prolonged exposure to the sun causes both heat rash and sunburn, but the two are not interconnected.
Creases in the skin like the neck, armpit, or groin have skin touching adjacent skin, which makes it difficult for air to circulate- in result these areas more prone to the rash. While this is commonly seen in hot, humid areas there is no known remedy to prevent your glands from clogging; but we do offer the following tips:

- Avoid tight clothing that prevents sweat evaporation
- Avoid heavy creams or lotions when sweating may be involved (ie: before a run)
- When exercising wear moisture wicking/dri-fit clothing, and change out of your workout clothes promptly
- Shower soon after excessive sweating in luke-warm or cool water
- Keep hydrated
- Make sure skin stays dry and doesn't sit moist or sweaty

The rash itself can vary in appearance from person to person, depending on health, routines, etc. The location of the rash can also affect the appearance. Ranging from tiny ‘sweat bubbles’ with no other symptoms to larger, harder, bumps deeper in the skin which involve itching and a prickly sensation. Rarely, reoccurring and severe heat rash may be potentially dangerous if enough skin is involved, since the lack of sweating can lead to heat-related illnesses such as heat exhaustion.
'Sweat Bubbles' resulting from Heat Rash.
Heat rash often resolves on its own when the skin cools and air circulates to affected skin. If the prickly sensation persists, calamine lotion or hydrocortisone creams may be helpful.


Note for New Moms: Babies have immature sweat glands that aren't able to remove the sweat they produce. They can develop heat rash if they are exposed to warm weather, are overdressed, excessively bundled, or have a fever.