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In 2014, many new drugs were added to the field of dermatology in both clinical and aesthetics. It’s wonderful to work in a field where I can always be at the front of progress and know I have the top drugs and procedures to offer my patients. I’d like to go over a few new things that were approved or launched last year that make me excited for the future of dermatology.

The FDA granted clearance to Syneron Candela’s PicoWay picosecond device for tattoo removal. The PicoWay is a dual wavelength device. So this technology would generate picosecond pulses to remove the tattoos. With the dual wavelength, it will be able to work on all tattoo colors. In the clinical trials, 86% of patients achieved at least 50 percent tattoo removal, so this is an exciting new prospect.

The PicoSure Picosecond Laser Workstation has already been cleared, in 2012, for the removal of tattoos as well, but now will start treating and removing wrinkles.

Restylane Silk Injectable Gel with 0.3% Lidocaine will be coming from Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, Inc. Restylane Silk is a crystal clear injectable gel composed of hyaluronic acid, a natural substance that already exists in the body. On top of being natural, this product is non-animal based and free from animal protein. The clinical trials for this were amazing with 98% subjects reporting improvement.

A once a day treatment for Female Pattern Hair Loss called Woman’s Rogaine 5% Minoxidil Topical Aerosol was launched in early November. Minoxidil is the only topical ingredient FDA-approved to help regrow hair. This product will penetrate that scalp with gentle massaging to reactivate hair follicles and stimulate hair growth. In the trails, 81% of woman had hair regrowth with hair up to 48% thicker than before. So not only is it helping stimulate hair growth, it’s improving your natural hair volume.

Celgene’s Otezla (apremilast) is an oral, selective inhibitor of phosphodiesterase 4 (PDE4), for the treatment of patients with moderate to severe plaque psoriasis for whom phototherapy or systemic therapy is appropriate. Otezla is the first and only PDE4 inhibitor approved for the treatment of plaque psoriasis. This approval came from the level of safety and efficacy results from the trials.

Syeron Medical Ltd. launched a new handpiece featuring a new 5-millimeter spot size for the Gentle Pro Nd: YAG Laser Series. This expands the functionality of the GentleYAG Pro and GentleMax Pro Nd:YAG laser to treat onychomycosis in addition to the treatment of vascular and pigmented lesions. With the added precision of the 5mm handpiece, it can raise the temperature under the nail to a level that’s inhospitable to fungus. This improves the appearance of clear nails.

For the treatments for patients with advanced or unresectable melanoma, who aren’t responding to other drugs, there is now Keytruda (pembrolizumad). Kaytruda is the first approved drug that blocks a cellular pathway known as PD-1, which restricts that body’s immune system from attacking melanoma cells. This is particularly exciting because treating patients with skin cancer, and curing them, is a huge goal at Contour Dermatology. Having a new treatment that now helps those who used to not respond to treatments might be the best news we got last year from therapeutics.

We know that in the dermatology field there’s always room to grow and learn more. Here at Contour Dermatology it’s a priority of ours to never get stagnant and to always strive for the best. The best treatments, the best care, the best results for our patients. That’s why learning about new and upcoming therapeutics is so exciting for us! It gives us a raised bar to aspire to.

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