Boston University Reports Dermatologic Surgery on the Rise

MedicalResearchers from Boston University School of Medicine and the Laser and Skin Cancer Center of Indiana have been studying the number of dermatologic procedures performed and tracking patient demand since 2000, and a recent report published in Dermatologic Surgery has found that the “Baby Boomer” generation is leading demand for certain procedures over the past decade.

The report published in Dermatologic Surgery shows that the number of cosmetic and non-cosmetic surgical procedures performed by dermatologic surgeons has been rising rapidly in recent years. An estimated 3.4 million cosmetic and non-cosmetic surgical procedures were performed in 2001, and a total of 7.6 million procedures were performed in 2007. This translates to a 120 percent growth rate over those seven years, and the greatest increase in procedures in that period was for soft tissue augmentation, Botox injections, and non-ablative resurfacing procedures.

Experts say the increase in demand is not only the result of more consumers being able to pay for the often-pricey procedures, but because many dermatologists have started emphasizing the importance of skin cancer prevention, and are offering a wide range of anti-aging services for those who want to reverse or slow down the signs of aging.

Dermatologists can now treat a number of severe skin conditions, manage skin cancer lesions, and also help reduce the effects of photoaging. Dermatologists today are also expanding the types of services they can perform, with many offering minimally invasive procedures such as Botox, laser skin rejuvenation and other injectables. Compared to 2001, this is a significant shift in service options.

Advances in laser and light devices have also contributed to the increase of completed procedures, and more dermatologists are taking the time to complete the training programs for the latest devices. This has allowed more people in major cities and markets to try the newest procedures as soon as they hit the market.

Further Reading

  • Up until now, dermatologists have been trying a variety of different skin removal techniques to get rid of precancerous skin lesions.

  • Topical agents, diet and certain medicines presented at the American Academy of Dermatology’s Summer Academy Meeting 2010 in Chicago is showing promise for preventing UV-induced skin cancer. Most skin cancers are caused by overexposure to ultraviolet radiation, and dermatologists are now encouraging the public to be conscientious about the amount of sun they are exposed to, and taking extra steps to use broad-spectrum sunscreen on a regular basis.

  • Individuals with a rare skin disease called recessive dystrophic epidermolysis bullosa (RDEB) can improve their condition with the transfer of bone marrow stem cells. A team of medical researchers has found that bone marrow stem cells can effectively treat the disease and help to repair the skin and speed up the healing process. This skin disease cannot be treated with conventional dermatology procedures.