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August 2019

Adam Friedman at ODAC

GW RESEARCHERS IDENTIFY BARRIER TO FUNGAL INFECTION DIAGNOSIS

By | Press

In a recent survey, researchers identified the barriers to accurately diagnosing cutaneous fungal infections

August 8, 2019

WASHINGTON (Aug. 8, 2019) —There are several barriers that prevent the consistent use of fungal diagnostic preparations to correctly identify cutaneous fungal infections, according to a survey from a team at the George Washington University (GW). The study is published in the Journal of Drugs in Dermatology.

Cutaneous fungal infections account for between 3.5 and 6.5 million dermatologist office visits per year. Despite their frequency, the diverse presentations of fungal infections often lead to misdiagnosis, resulting in additional costs, time, and delays in proper care. Direct microscopy using potassium hydroxide (KOH) or other stains provides an inexpensive method to diagnose fungal infections. However, this requires clinics to have the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendment (CLIA) certification.

“Because of the extraordinary ability for these fungal infections to mimic other skin diseases, identification based on clinical inspection alone can often lead to misdiagnosis and mismanagement,” said Adam Friedman, MD, professor and interim chair of the Department of Dermatology at the GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences and senior author on the study. “Little is known regarding the frequency with which dermatologists use these simple, yet diagnosis changing bedside fungal preparations, nor do we know if and what barriers exist preventing accurate diagnosis of infections.”

Friedman’s team previously published research highlighting the difficulty even dermatologists have when distinguishing between skin fungal infections and other inflammatory skin diseases, highlighting the importance of using laboratory-based tools to aid in patient care.

This survey, led by Emily Murphy, a research fellow in the Department of Dermatology at the GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences, was distributed via email to participants of the ODAC Dermatology Aesthetic and Surgical Conference, and the data was compiled in a web-based platform. Of the respondents, around 21% indicated they rarely/never perform fungal preparations and about 20% reported they sometimes do, often because they think clinical diagnosis is adequate or because fungal preparations take too long. Additionally, about 21% of respondents reported not having CLIA certifications, mostly because the process requires too much work or because they do not know how to apply. Of the providers who have CLIA certification, more than 25% reported that it was difficult to obtain.

“Our results indicate the need for increased education about the many clinical faces of cutaneous fungal infections and proper use of bedside diagnostics,” Friedman said. “It also highlights the need for policy-based interventions in order to ease the process of CLIA certification, to ensure that dermatology clinics are equipped to accurately diagnose infections.”

The study, titled “Use of In-Office Preparations by Dermatologists for the Diagnosis of Cutaneous Fungal Infections,” published in the Journal of Drugs in Dermatology can be found at jddonline.com/articles/dermatology/S1545961619P0798X/1/.

Media: For more information or to set up an interview, please contact Ashley Rizzardo at amrizz713@gwu.edu or 202-994-8679.

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About the GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences
Founded in 1824, the GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences (SMHS) was the first medical school in the nation’s capital and is the 11th oldest in the country. Working together in our nation’s capital, with integrity and resolve, the GW SMHS is committed to improving the health and well-being of our local, national and global communities. smhs.gwu.edu

CME Dermatology at the Skin of Color Update

NEW NAME, NEW DATES FOR LARGEST SKIN OF COLOR EVENT

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NEW NAME, NEW DATES FOR LARGEST SKIN OF COLOR

MEDICAL EDUCATION EVENT

(New York, August, 2019)– The largest medical education event focused on the dermatologic treatment of skin of color has a new name. Skin of Color Update, previously the Skin of Color Seminar Series, provides dermatologists with evidence-based research and practical pearls in treating skin of color, including patients with multiracial backgrounds.

“Just as the treatment of skin of color has evolved, this event has also evolved,” said Skin of Color Update co-chair and founding dermatologist Eliot Battle, MD. “Thanks to audience feedback, nearly all general sessions will have additional time for Q&A, making this year’s event the most interactive yet.”

Skin of Color Update will now be held annually in the fall. The 2019 event will be held September 7 and 8 at the Crowne Plaza Times Square in New York.

Skin of Color Update uses a didactic, case-based approach through lectures, hands-on-training and live demonstrations. Co-founding dermatologist Andrew Alexis, MD, also serves as an event co-chair. Common skin, hair and nail conditions in diverse populations will be covered. In addition, advanced treatment protocols for pigmentary and hair disorders will be shared during mini symposiums.

Sessions will address medical, surgical and cosmetic dermatology. New sessions include:

  • “Challenging Challenges: Hidradenitis Suppurativa and the Skin of Color Patient” with Ted Rosen, MD
  • “Current Understanding and Novel Innovations in Photoprotection” with Henry Lim, MD
  • “Diagnosis and Management of Vitiligo in Skin of Color Patients: Where Do We Stand?” with Pearl Grimes, MD
  • “Laser and Device-Based Treatment of Scars” with Paul Friedman, MD
  • “Surgical Approaches for Keloids” with Maritza Perez, MD

“It’s vitally important for all dermatologists to know how to provide safe and effective treatment for diverse patients,” Dr. Battle said. “Skin of Color Update gives dermatologists crucial annual updates and pearls that can directly impact patient care.”

In addition to educational sessions, the conference will offer an exhibit hall featuring companies showcasing the latest innovations in dermatology. A poster session will also be available. In 2018, more than 300 dermatology providers attended the event.

Skin of Color Update is a product of SanovaWorks, the publisher of the Journal of Drugs in Dermatology(JDD) and the producer of the ODAC Dermatology, Aesthetics & Surgical Conference.

Up to 12 CE credits (AMA PRA Category 1™) can be earned. Registration is available at skinofcolorupdate.com. Space is limited.

Media Contact:

Allison Sit

allison.sit@gmail.com