Members of the College of Family Physicians of Canada may claim MAINPRO-M2 Credits for this unaccredited educational program.
Francesca Cheung, MD CCFP, is a family physician with a special interest in dermatology. She received the Diploma in Practical Dermatology from the Department of Dermatology at Cardiff University in Wales, UK. She is practising at the Lynde Centre for Dermatology in Markham, Ontario and works closely with Dr. Charles Lynde, MD FRCPC, an experienced dermatologist. In addition to providing direct patient care, she acts as a sub-investigator in multiple clinical studies involving psoriasis, onychomycosis, and acne.
Erythema ab igne (EAI) is a localized hypermelanosis with erythema in a reticulated pattern. It is triggered from repeated exposure to heat and infrared radiation. Actinic keratosis, squamous cell carcinoma, and Merkel cell carcinoma have been reported in patients after chronic exposure to infrared radiation. EAI is diagnosed based on clinical symptoms. If the diagnosis is uncertain, a skin biopsy may be performed. Early in the disease process, elimination of the heat source may lead to complete resolution of the symptoms.
Age-related macular degeneration (ARMD) is a progressive disease affecting the central vision of patients older than 55 years. ARMD is classified as atrophic (dry) or exudative (wet) forms based on clinical characteristics. Management of atrophic ARMD includes vitamin supplementation with high-dose antioxidants in appropriate patients. Patients who develop exudative ARMD may be eligible for treatment depending on flourescein angiogram characteristics. Options available to close a choroidal neovascular membrane include thermal laser photocoagulation or photodynamic therapy. Other treatment modalities are currently under investigation that may lead to more therapeutic options in the future.
Key words: macular degeneration, vitamins, laser, photodynamic therapy, angiogenesis.
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