Skin is the largest organ, covering our bodies.
Skin regulates body temperature, helps respiration by means of gas exchange and helps excretion by sweating. Skin also protects the body from external effects. “Skin is also associated with immunity processes and it has metabolic functions.”

Skin is composed of three layers:

  • Epidermis (outermost layer)
  • Dermis (layer under the epidermis)
  • Subcutis (a part of dermis)

Epidermis

  • It is the layer that protects sub layers of the skin.
  • This layer does not have blood vessels and nerves.
  • Outer part of the epidermis is composed of dead cells.
  • It contains cells that define the color of the skin.
  • It protects the skin from the dangerous rays of light.

Dermis

  • It is thicker than the epidermis and composed of living cells.
  • It has blood vessels, nerves, sweat glands, sebaceous glands, hair follicles and sensory receptors.
  • “It provides elasticity of the skin and contains thin elastic fibers”.

Subcutis 
“Actually there are no borders between dermis and subcutis; wherein the thickness and transition properties of each part depends on age, gender, eating habits, life conditions and their location on the body.”
It protects the body from hits and impacts besides preventing heat loss from the body. 

Sweat glands are located here, therefore it helps excretion.

Diseases

  • Atopic Eczema (Atopic Dermatitis)
  • Acne during puberty (Acne Vulgaris)
  • Baldness (Alopecia)
  • Rash (Urticaria)
  • Lichen (Lichen Planus)
  • Fungal disease ( Fungal Infection)
  • Pityriasis Rosea
  • Cold sores (Herpes Simplex)
  • Vitiligo
  • Behçet’s Disease
  • Leprosy (Lepra)

Atopic Eczema

What does “Atopic” mean?
The term “atopic” refers to oversensitive skin and respiratory tract (nose, lungs and such). This term is generally used for those who have allergic diseases such as hay fever and asthma.”

What is the age of onset for “Atopic Eczema”, what are its symptoms? 
Atopic eczema can be seen at any age. The risk of incidence is higher in babies. Symptoms are seen on the face and outer surface of the arms and legs. In adults, it may be anywhere on the body besides the inner surface of the arms and legs.

Is Atopic Eczema contagious?
No, it is not contagious.

How is it treated? What should I pay attention to? 
One should definitely see a dermatologist for treatment. However, in order to stay away from triggering factors, the following should be noted: 

1- Skin should always be moist. It shouldn’t stay dry and moisturizers should be used after a short warm shower or bath.
2- One should stay away from skin irritants. Soaps, detergents, perfumes, wool and such materials may irritate the skin.
3- Excessive sweating should be prevented and hot environments should be avoided.
4- Lesion should not be itched and fingernails should be kept short. Stress makes a person want to itch, therefore it should be avoided.
5- Synthetic and wool clothing is a wrong choice. 

6- If there is a diagnosed allergy, the allergen should be avoided.

Can Atopic Eczema Heal Completely? 
Although there is a chance of alleviation or disappearing completely, it may recur.
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Acne during Puberty (Acne Vulgaris)

What is acne?
“It is a long-lasting and recurring inflammatory disease of the hair-sebaceous gland unit. It is generally located on the face, back, chest and shoulders. It is generally seen commonly in puberty. Acne can increase if a healthy and balanced diet is not followed”.

Is it associated with hormonal disorder?
Although it is commonly seen in puberty, when hormone levels fluctuate, it does not indicate a hormonal disorder unless set forth by a physician.

What are the factors that increase acne? 
Stress, excessive sweating, cosmetics and chemical agents affect acne.

Does nervousness cause acne? 
Nervousness does not have a direct effect on acne formation. Mental tension does not cause acne. However acnes can cause mental tension in a person who has acne. “This condition is especially significant in teenagers. Many patients falsely believe that they can prevent acne formation by destroying blackheads that are the initial elements for acne and non-inflammatory blisters related to hair follicles.”

What are doesn’t?
Do not touch, squeeze and pluck acne. Otherwise, you may cause new acne formation, scars and infection.

Is it contagious?
 
No, it isn’t contagious.
What are the points to pay attention during treatment? 
“It requires long-term treatment controlled by a physician. The patient needs to trust the physician, use medication regularly and go to follow-up exams. Please consult your doctor if you notice any unexpected side effects.”

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Baldness (Alopecia)

What is hair loss?
It is losing more than 100 hairs within 24 hours. Generally, there are 3 types of hair loss:

Common Hair loss;
Hair loss might be increased temporarily (6 months) 1-2 months after giving birth, stress, surgery and high fever. Besides, endocrinology diseases may cause hair loss. Diabetes is a good example of such diseases.

Hair loss that occurs without localized scarring: It may occur after some cosmetic applications (such as blow dryer) and superficial fungal disease.

Hair loss occurs with localized scarring: It may occur due to some familial diseases and tumoral diseases. This cause irreversible damage. 


What is the most frequent age of onset? 
The onset age is 20-30 in females and 30-40 in males.

Is it contagious? 
No, it isn’t contagious.
Is there a treatment that can prevent hair loss? 
It may be prevented if the treatment is started early. Moreover, medicines effective in stopping hair loss can also be used on a doctor’s recommendation.
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Rash (Urticaria)

What is urticaria?
The term “Urtica” is from Latin meaning nettle. It is colloquially known as “rash”. It is generally characterized by slightly raised, red (or sometimes paler in the middle) rashes in different dimensions with definite apparent borders spread throughout the body.

Is urticaria a life-threatening condition? 
It isn’t life threatening if localized only on the skin. However, sub-dermal edema that causes rash may be life threatening if it progressed to the trachea.

What are the causes of urticaria? 
 
Medication (Especially penicillin)

Food (Many foods such as eggs and fish)

Dust and animal hair

Insect bites

What are the treatments;
 
One should first consult with a doctor. If the disease recurs, same doctor should be consulted instead of changing the doctor. Moreover, drug use as well as the consumption of fish, eggs and such foods should be carefully adjusted. Drugs should not be used unnecessarily and consumption of fish, eggs and nuts should be monitored.

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Lichen (Planus)

What is Lichen Planus?
Lichen Planus is a common disease that affects the mouth, esophagus, male and female genitals.

What are the main causes of this disease?
Stress is the main factor in the onset of this disease. Furthermore, hepatitis B, hepatitis C and liver disease are also contributing factors.

What are the characteristics of rashes in this disease?
These rashes may appear due to itching. Most frequently, rashes appear on the hands, feet and front side of the face. The rashes are small but they form big rashes by combining.
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Fungal Disease

What is fungal disease? Where is it seen?
Fungal diseases are caused by contagious, pathogenic yeasts or fungus. “In daily life, the most ideal reproduction medium except for human body for yeasts and mold is a warm and moist environment” (Mat, 5). Therefore, they are frequently seen on the groin area, between toes, on the face, mouth, nails, hairy skin and female genitals.

How is it transmitted?
It can be transmitted by sharing materials such as hats, towels, caps and hotel carpets as well as shared spaces such as baths and spas. It can be transmitted from human to human and from animal to animal in case of close contact.

Is it treatable?
It is treatable and one can recover when correct medication is administered. However, it may recur unless necessary precautions are taken. In case there is fungus on fingernails and toenails, a doctor should be consulted instead of pulling the nail out.

What are the protective measures?
First of all, personal belongings should not be shared with others. The body should be kept dry. Measures vary depending on the individual since it is not known which fungus that person is prone to. For example, children are more prone to hairy skin fungus due to the chemical structure of hairy skin. Therefore, they should keep their hair clean and should not cover their head. 

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Pityriasis Rosea

What is Pityriasis rosea?
It is one of the frequently seen skin diseases and colloquially referred to as “Rose Disease”.

What is the cause of this disease?
The cause of Pityriasis rose is not certain, however, it is considered to stem from oversensitivity to viruses.

How does it present and is it associated with foods? 
It first presents as a big, round, flaky rash and smaller ones appear in each 5-15 days. It is not associated with foods.

How long does it last?
It heals within 2-3 months.
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Cold sores (Herpes Simplex)

What is herpes simplex and where does it appear? 
It is a disturbing outcome of an infection and it disrupts the appearance of a person. “Herpes simplex virus type 1” is the virus causing cold sores. It is generally seen on the lips, nostrils and around them.

How is it transmitted? 
It can be transmitted by directly touching a cold sore or sharing household goods. This way, the virus does not only spread to the circumoral area but also to genitals or any area where the integrity of skin is disrupted.

Why does it recur?
After the first infection, nerve group in the infected area goes into hibernation and that region becomes an ideal spot for the cold sore to recur. 

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Vitiligo

What is vitiligo?
Vitiligo is a skin condition characterized by the formation of white patches on the skin. A doctor should be consulted if it is seen. 


What are the causes of vitiligo?
Vitiligo does not have a fundamental or proven cause. However, it is the white patches that appear due to pigments disappearing for an unknown reason.

Does vitiligo have a cure?
Vitiligo is a cosmetic problem. It can be covered with make-up. It also has various treatments and they last at least 3 months.

What should vitiligo patients pay attention to? 
The main reason for vitiligo formation is the disappearing of the pigments that provide the color of skin. These cells also protect the skin from dangerous sunrays. Therefore, patients with vitiligo should stay away from dangerous sunlight. Skin burns may be formed easily as well as moles that contribute to cancer formation.

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Behçet’s Disease

deri_11Prof. Dr. Hulusi Behçet
Hulusi Behçet is a Turkish dermatologist and scientist. He is the first scientist to describe Behçet’s disease that is a blood vessel inflammation disorder in1939 and the illness was then named after him. He conducted his studies in Istanbul Faculty of Medicine

What is Behçet’s Disease?
Behçet’s Disease does not have a well-defined cause and it can involve all organs and tissues in the body, particularly skin, eyes, joints and veins besides causing open wounds in the mouth and on genitals.

What are the symptoms of Behçet’s Disease?
 
Oral lesions are seen almost in all patients. They might be present alone for years before other symptoms appear. There might be a single lesion or many lesions on the inner side of the cheeks, on the tongue, lips and soft palate. Wounds are painful and off-white in the middle surrounded by a red area. Genitals have pain. Various skin symptoms appear. Legs present with red and painful buttons. It is rarely spread on the body. As the disease progresses, there may be acne-like symptoms in different areas. It shows symptoms, joints, blood vessels and the nervous system.

Treatment
There are various treatments. Therefore, doctors define the treatment choice. The disease is relived in time.