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King Saud UniversityDr. Khalid AlGhamdi, supervisor of the King Saud University Vitiligo Research Chair, made two presentations at the 12th International Conference of the Saudi Society of Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery (SSDDS), which took place in September in Alkhobar, Saudi Arabia.

Dr. AlGhamdi’s first presentation, entitled Treatment of plantar warts with bleomycin by intrapersonal multipuncture technique, demonstrated the relative safety and efficiency of bleomycin, a drug sometimes used for Hodgkin's lymphoma and testicular cancer patients, when used to treat plantar warts.

Plantar warts, like all warts, are caused by a virus that invades the skin through tiny cuts or scrapes. The warts may not appear for weeks or months after the initial exposure. Like other viral infections, plantar warts are contagious, and epidemics sometimes break out among people who share gym or athletic facilities or who engage in group activities where bare feet are the rule such as yoga and martial arts.

Treatments have largely proven ineffective against plantar warts.

Dr. AlGhamdi’s next presentation was entitled Dermatologists' level of compliance with isotretinoin prescription guidelines for females of childbearing potential. Isotretinoin is a medication used mostly for cystic acne, the harshest and the most painful form of acne. Prescribing the medicine to females of childbearing potential, however, is discouraged in the medical community as it has been shown to cause birth defects.

King Saud UniversityIn Dr. AlGhamdi’s August 2011 article in the International Journal of Dermatology, 62.4% dermatologists avoided prescribing isotretinoin to females of childbearing potential (FCBP). Some dermatologists, therefore, are still prescribing the medicine.

A number of local and international dermatologists took part in this conference. Researchers came from the Arab region, Europe and the United States.

Professor Salih Aljabre of King Faisal University’s Dermatology College in Dammam served as Conference Chairman.

Topics covered in the conference included:

  1. Bacterial skin infections
  2. Skin mycoses
  3. Aging skin
  4. Dermatology from Arab countries.
  5. Treatment of alopecia areata
  6. Common and serious pitfalls in dermatopathology.
  7. Laser parameters in common dermatoses -Inflammatory bowel disease and isotretinoin
  8. Acne and its treatment
  9. Pathogenesis of vitiligo
  10. Newer antifungal drugs
  11. Detecting skin cancer with polarized light
  12. Psoriasis in North Africa
  13. Cosmetics and Laser
  14. Human stem cells and their application.
  15. Impact of patient psychology on cosmetic practice
  16. Biologic use in viral hepatitis

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