Posts Tagged ‘Mayo Clinic’

Just for Mom: Spots, Wrinkles & Skin Tags — Oh My!

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

In the “Just for Mom” category, I’ll be talking about women’s health issues and other things that we moms need to know about to take better care of ourselves. I hope you’ll stop by often!

Over time, skin suffers from wear and tear, and wrinkles, spots and growths begin to appear. While we may not be thrilled about these changes, it is reassuring to know that most of them aren’t anything to worry about.

Using sunscreen regularly can help hold some of them, such as age spots, at bay. But some just come with (ahem) the years.  The good folks at the Mayo Clinic Health Letter explain some of these normal changes and possible treatment options.

Harmless growths include:

°         Age or liver spots. These flat, brown areas, also called solar lentigos, typically occur on the hands, back and face. Using a topical retinoid cream — often in conjunction with bleaching cream and a mild topical steroid — may gradually fade an age spot.

°         Skin tags. These flesh-colored growths protrude from the skin, often on a stalk. They’re often found on the neck or in the armpits. A doctor can remove them with surgical scissors, an electrical device or liquid nitrogen.

°         Cherry angiomas. These small, smooth, cherry-red spots are commonly found on the torso. They range from pinhead size to ¼ inch across. They can be removed with a laser, liquid nitrogen or an electrical device.

°         Seborrheic keratoses. These brown, black or pale growths look waxy, as if they were dripped on the skin by a candle. They usually appear on the face, chest, shoulders and back, often in multiples. Their size ranges from ¼ inch to 1 inch across. They can be removed with a simple surgical procedure or with liquid nitrogen.

The cost of removing any of these harmless spots — considered cosmetic procedures — may not be covered by insurance.

Not all skin spots are harmless, of course. Skin cancer can look similar to a harmless spot or growth. Any spots that bleed and don’t heal should be examined by a doctor. Other symptoms to share with your doctor include itchiness, pain or a changing outline, color or appearance.

The folks at the Mayo Clinic Health Letter are offering a free trial issue. Check out this terrific publication. And thanks to the National Institutes of Health for the illustration.

MRSA: How to Protect Your Family

Friday, October 10th, 2008

PVL is expressed in Staphylococcus aureus (sho...If you are a regular reader of
this blog, you know I'm a journalist who often writes about kids'
health issues. But I rarely post an entire article as a blog post. I
think this one, however, is important enough to share in its

MRSA is in the news a lot right now, and while experts
say parents don't need to freak out, there are important things you can
do — and that you can teach your children to do — to help avoid these

If you’re like most parents, recent news reports about temporary
school closings, and even deaths, from so-called “superbugs” have
probably left you feeling a bit unnerved — and concerned about how to
keep your child safe, whether at daycare, school or the football locker
room. Here’s the info you need to protect your family.


Several decades ago, a new strain of staph bacteria showed up in
hospitals. It was resistant to the broad-spectrum antibiotics commonly
used to zap it, according to the Mayo Clinic. Named
methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), it was one of the
first germs to defeat all but the most powerful drugs.

About 30 percent of the population carries regular staph bacteria on
their skin or in their nose, according to Gregory Moran, M.D., a
professor of medicine at UCLA School of Medicine in Los Angeles and a
physician with the emergency-medicine and the infectious-diseases
departments at Olive View-UCLA Medical Center. About 1 percent of the
population carries the MRSA bacteria, he says.