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Medical Dermatology

Skin of Color

While many skin conditions affect all ethnicities and skin types similarly, there are also quite a few that are much more common or present differently on non-Caucasian skin. For example, keloid scars are more common in African-American patients and patients of African ancestry. Certain types of birthmarks such as Nevus of Ito ot Nevus of Ota are more common in Japanese and Korean ancestry patients. While melanoma overall is more common in lighter-skinned patients there is a dangerous subtype called acral melanoma that affects the palms, soles and nails. This type is equally common in all races. However, perhaps because awareness of this type is not very high we tend to see more advanced cases in patients of color. Some treatments need to be adjusted based on skin type and pigmentation. For example some lasers can more easily cause burning or discoloration if used on the wrong skin type. A skin condition called vitiligo is equally common in Caucasian and non-Caucasian patients, but because it leads to complete loss of skin color it can be more concerning for patients with darker skin. Dr. Daniel Hoffman of Skin Win Dermatology trained at the Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, which had specialized training for skin diseases affecting patients of color. Regardless of your skin type or ethnicity, be assured that Dr. Hoffman has the expertise and experience to help you get the best customized treatment for your problem and your skin type.

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