What exactly does a dermatologist do?
Dermatologists are medical doctors who specialize in diagnosing and treating conditions related to the skin, hair, and nails.
Dermatologists attend up to 12 years of medical school, including a three-year-long dermatology residency. After a dermatologist completes this training, they must complete an exam given by the American Board of Dermatology to become board-certified. Certification ensures that the dermatologist has the most rigorous education and experience in the field of dermatologic medicine. After certification, a dermatologist can become a Fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), the professional organization of dermatologists in the US. To become a Fellow (FAAD), a dermatologist must be board-certified by the American Board of Dermatology.
Some skin conditions that dermatologists can diagnose and treat include:
Skin cancer (melanoma or squamous cell carcinoma)
Atopic dermatitis/ contact dermatitis (allergic reactions)
Some dermatologists undergo special training to be able to perform procedures related to dermatopathology (microscopic diseases of the skin), as well as additional training to be able to perform procedures including:
Cosmetic procedures/ cosmetic surgery
Mohs surgery (removal of cancerous skin cells)
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