By: Dr. Craig Crippen
Canadian Society of Phlebology Fellowship
This past weekend, Dr. Craig Crippen has now become a fellow member of an elite group of Vein Specialists in Canada. This fellowship in the Canadian Society of Phlebology is bestowed to those physicians who have dedicated themselves to the practice of Phlebology in Canada. To reach this goal, the physician must not only treat and manage venous disease, but also attend multiple meetings and take different courses to augment their knowledge in this area of medicine.
“I am honoured to be a part of such an esteemed group of Phlebologists in Canada, together we are improving the management of Varicose Vein disease one patient at a time.” Dr. Craig Crippen MD ABPh DPD
By: Dr. Craig Crippen
Pseudofolliculitis Barbae – What is it?
Last week, I spoke a little bit about acne and how much it seems to take over the lives of adolescents. Oddly enough, acne isn’t exclusive to the young, as it seems that many people still experience the onset of pimples as adults. The only difference is that when one is older, he or she isn’t as freaked out about it as they once were.
Or are they? It can be argued that acne becomes a bigger problem for those that are long past their high school days. Perhaps, the mere idea that they “shouldn’t” have acne is one of the reasons for this. Of course, acne is far from the only skin condition that many people have issues with as they get older.
Brown spots, sun damage and the ever-dreaded skin cancer are all concerns for adults, especially for those with lighter or more sensitive skin. I have a friend named Eddie who, now in his 30s, is deathly afraid of shaving. I had no idea that the reason for his beard was that – as he puts it – razors “rip” his face off!
When pressing him to elaborate, here’s what he told me: “In high school, I learned that my face and razor blades don’t mix. So I started using electric shavers, which are a bit better for my skin. No matter what though, a day after shaving I get razor bumps. My skin gets red and irritable. It looks horrible. I don’t know what else to do except not shave!”
To the best of my knowledge, razor bumps and acne are two different things. Razor bumps are also known as Pseudofolliculitis barbae. They basically exist due to ingrown hairs which are most common in men with curly hair that may tend to curl into the skin instead of straight out of the follicle.
Eddie claims that he has “tried everything”. From creams and moisturizers to something he described as a cross between a glue stick and a deodorant bar to rub along his neck and cheeks after a shave! Unfortunately, these methods have not helped to do away with the irritation and redness that has plagued him since the beginning of his shaving days.
I know that this certainly isn’t the case with all men, and I’m sure that each case is different. After all, there are so many different hair and skin types that the causes and solutions for each situation will vary from person to person. My recommendation, of course, would be to visit your dermatologist to learn about possible treatments.
I’m pretty sure that a growing a full grown beard isn’t the only solution to avoiding razor bumps. Eddie’s situation certainly has me thinking though. I wonder if Photodynamic Therapy would work? What is Photodynamic Therapy, you ask? Ah, my first cliffhanger! I’ll tackle that one in my next blog.
By: Dr. Craig Crippen
Harvard Medicine – Dr. Crippen in Boston This Fall
Does your physician visit the very best and brightest people in the world to keep on top of current and future medical information and technologies? Harvard medicine and harvard medical school are attended by the brightest and most intelligent people in the world. You should expect that your laser physician keeps up to date on the most accurate and relevant information available today. It shows that your physician really enjoys their job and cares about his patients and their results of their treatments.
A picture of Dr. Crippen outside Harvard Medical School
It was a orgeous time of year to visit Boston, one of the most historic of all cities in North America. Fall is stunning in Boston, from the large open parks to the historic monuments and sites all around the city, it is really a travellers paradise.
Harvard University (located in Cambridge MA, which is 5 minutes from downtown Boston) is North America’s oldest higher learning school, established in 1636. It is one of, if not the most, prestigious universities in the world and as such it attracts the best and brightest in all fields of study. Harvard was named after it’s first benefactor John Harvard.
Continuing Medical Education as a physician is crucial to keeping up to date with the latest and newest technologies in the field of laser & cosmetic medicine. Make sure your physician attends at least one laser medicine course per year to keep up with the latest techniques and technology in the field.
A Beautiful Fall Day in Boston in front of Harvard Medical School
Trinity Church, Boston MA
By: Dr. Craig Crippen
You know, if there’s one good thing about acne, it’s that so many people have experienced having it, you’re never alone when fretting over pimples! This was especially true all throughout high school. For me, it seemed like that was the time of my life when I couldn’t watch a single thing on television without seeing a commercial for acne-fighting products. Attacking acne is important to do early on and frequently!
Perhaps, these ads still show up on T.V. all the time, but when I was in high school, they certainly seemed to resinate with me and my classmates. And Who could blame us? It seemed like every one of us was waking up with pimples nearly every day! So naturally, we bought into these ads.
Cleansers, wipes, creams…you name it! And quite honestly, none of them ever seemed to truly work. The stinging sensation left by some of these products gave the impression that they were penetrating those nasty little bumps and doing away with them for good. But sure enough, the acne seemed to win the battle by rearing its ugly head (or heads actually) throughout our high school careers.
Now, for many of us, the end of our adolescence spelled the end of our battle with acne. But not for all of us. There are those who experience acne at later ages and wonder what they’re doing wrong. The fear that maybe they’re eating too much oily foods or perhaps not washing their faces well enough starts to set in.
But I wash everyday!” and “I don’t eat junk food!” many exclaim. Oddly enough, one’s diet and washing habits may not even have an impact on the acne they have. At least, not for everyone. I’ve read that there’s no real way to predict how long one’s acne will remain and what can be done to eliminate it.
But then again, I’ve also read about Microdermabrasion. And no, this isn’t one of those crazy products advertised on T.V. It’s actually a simply procedure that works to exfoliate skin to remove dead surface layers to treat conditions such as acne. Using what is known as a “Diamond Tome Wand”, the Microdermabrasion procedure actually uses natural diamond chips to lift away dead skin cells!
How’s that for fancy? Generally taking about a half hour to complete, the procedure creates much softer, smoother and acne-free skin. It also causes no disruption in the regular day-to-day activities of the patient. All that’s needed is standard every day upkeep to keep the skin clean and moisturized.
And…you might want to keep away from the junk food too. There’s other benefits to that as well!
Making Moles Disappear
I remember not being able to stop staring. I felt guilty doing it too. Even as I gazed in bewilderment, telling myself it was impolite, I somehow couldn’t look away. I’m not sure why, but somehow I was drawn to it. Embarrassingly, it was not unlike Mike Myers as Austin Powers not being able to control himself when looking at Fred Savage’s The Mole.
This is how I felt in Mrs. Peterson’s math class my entire Grade 11 year. Let me make clear, that I do not find moles gross or anything – and they’re certainly not funny. I guess I just didn’t completely understand what they were or how they develop. I’m sure poor Mrs. Peterson had her fair share of teasing throughout her life. None of which, she deserved of course.
But there the mole sat, directly to the left of her mouth on her cheek. Moles are not uncommon, of course. They are, however, commonly misunderstood. Also known as “melanocytic nevus”, moles are simply benign pigmented growths. Containing high concentrations of pigment, moles are easily seen since they are generally darker than a person’s natural skin tone.
I used to think – as I’m sure many others did – “why doesn’t Mrs. Peterson just have her mole removed?” Perhaps, back in high school, mole removal wasn’t known to be the safe and fairly speedy practice that it is today. Local Excision is the basic term for the surgical removal of moles as well as other skin tags and cysts.
I have no idea if Mrs. Peterson has gone through such a procedure since I left high school. And somehow, I think she may find it rude of me to suggest it if I ever bumped into her. I don’t believe moles are anything to be ashamed of. However, for those who would prefer to live without them, they should know that the average Local Excision appointment is generally about 20 minutes long.
After a local anesthetic is applied to the area to freeze the tissue, the unwanted mole is removed and the skin is closed with stitches. Sounds like a pretty basic procedure, right? Doctors generally recommend that the skin area is treated with great care over the next week, before getting the stitches taken out. Making moles disappear isn’t as tough as you probably think it is.
Of course, this means an appropriate cleaning and moistening regiment as the treated area may be a bit tender for a little while. Shortly after the procedure, however, one will not have to worry about any further staring or joke-telling at the hands of those who don’t quite understand moles. Unless you bump into Austin Powers, of course.