'News' Category Archives

Five stars for Elan Medical Skin Clinic in Essex!

The team at Elan Medical Skin Clinic in Essex would like to thank all of our wonderful clients who have given us feedback on Whatclinic.com – as we have received a Five Star Customer Service rating for the sixth year running!

Please share this news with your friends, family and colleagues – and we’ll keep on doing what we do: providing excellent customer service and exceptional quality medical skin solutions.

Click here to read our latest reviews.

Essex skin expert blows myths on hair care out of the water

Woman cratches her scalp. Dry hair and an itchy scalp? Ask our Essex skin expert, Sue Ibrahim at Elan Medical Skin Clinic in Rayleigh, Essex for help.

Dry hair and an itchy scalp? Ask our Essex skin expert, Sue Ibrahim at Elan Medical Skin Clinic in Rayleigh, Essex for help.

There are all sorts of myths surrounding good hair care and in this blog Elan Medical Skin Clinic’s resident skin expert and nurse consultant in dermatology, Sue Ibrahim takes a look at what’s true and what’s not.

From rinsing and repeating when shampooing, using conditioner and intense conditioning cures for split ends, to what causes an itchy scalp, we are bombarded with advice. But how much of it should we pay any attention to?

Lather, rinse, repeat

Read More…

Sue Ibrahim heads up The British Association of Aesthetic Nurses, Doctors, and Dentists

We are delighted to announce that our very own Sue Ibrahim, has taken on the challenge to set up a Steering Committee in order to form a new multi-disciplinary professional association comprising doctors, nurses and dentists who work in the medical aesthetic speciality.

Elan Medical Skin Clinic’s skin expert Sue Ibrahim

Elan Medical Skin Clinic’s skin expert Sue Ibrahim.

With over 30 years experience as a dermatology nurse and twenty years experience working within the medical aesthetic industry, Sue Ibrahim is excited at the prospect of this new venture.

The new association, The British Association of Aesthetic Nurses, Doctors and Dentists (BAANDD) will offer a multi-disciplinary voice to the medical aesthetic industry.

Sue has been an active supporter of the Safetyinbeauty Campaign, formed in 2013 by Antonia Mariconda as a response to the growing dissatisfaction and devastation caused by dubious cosmetic surgical and non-surgical treatments, and was formed by a group of like-minded professionals and experts.



Essex skin expert reveals the fads not back up by evidence

A girl drinks a sports drink - Essex skin expert from Elan Medical Skin Clinic in Rayleigh debunks the myths not based on scientific evidence

Essex skin expert from Elan Medical Skin Clinic in Rayleigh debunks the myths not based on scientific evidence

Before you reach for yet another glass of water, Essex skin expert, Sue Ibrahim would like to shed some light on some of the skin fads out there.

At Elan Medical Skin Clinic in Rayleigh we do not offer new technology or recommend certain skin care regimes until there is a wealth of clinical evidence to show they are safe and the results are clinically proven. Here are some myths that have no evidence base behind the advice.

Skin fad no.1 – drink 2 litres of water a day

It is claimed that drinking two litres of water a day is the amount we should drink for optimal health. This much water is said to benefit us in many ways from flushing away harmful toxins from our bodies, reducing lines and wrinkles, clearing acne, to helping us lose weight and fighting infections, among others.

But according to American paediatrician Aaron E. Caroll from Indiana University, there’s absolutely no science to back up the idea that we should be drinking eight glasses of water a day, and there never was.

Read More…

News update: Elan Medical Clinic in London

Some of you regular clients will already be aware that Sue Ibrahim, our Dermatology Nurse Consultant is going to be become a grandmother in March. This is very exciting news for her. A a result, Sue has decided to cut out her weekly clinics in London, in order to spend more time with her daughter and grandchild. For this reason we will be taking on no more dermatology patients at the clinic in Whitecross Street, central London. Existing patients will be either transferred over to the clinic in Rayleigh, Essex or will be handed over to another dermatologist based in London. Sue’s decision to cut her hours will not affect her availability at the Rayleigh Clinic.

With a Dermatology Nurse Consultant you know your face is in a safe pair of hands.




Skin changes during pregnancy

Pregnancy is normally a time when you are radiating with excitement, yes? But when your pregnancy complexion doesn’t always reflect that inner joy it can dampen your spirits.

Worry not, for most you will find that these skin issues resolve themselves following the birth of your baby.  Here are some of the most common skin problems women encounter during pregnancy—and what you can do about them.


Pregnancy should be a time of excitement

Skin Sensitivity

Go easier on your skin now that you’re pregnant. You might get red more easily if you use a facial scrub, your normal facial might verge on painful, and the perfumed lotion you wear might irritate your skin (and make you nauseated, but that’s a different story). That’s why many mums-to-be switch to unscented products and start choosing products that do not contain harsh chemicals, preservatives and fragrances. “You certainly don’t want anything causing micro-tears on your skin,” says Sue Ibrahim, our dermatology nurse consultant.  “The more cuts and wounds on your skin, the easier it is for chemicals to be absorbed into your bloodstream. Ingredients to stay away from in soaps and body washes include sodium laureth sulphate, parabens and fragrance.” These ingredients aren’t just potential irritants—some say they could pose health risks to baby. We say believe it, because (not surprisingly) a lot of products aren’t tested directly on pregnant women. If you are using prescription topicals on your face you need to tell your doctor that you are pregnant as most prescription creams are not licensed for use during pregnancy either. At Elan Medical Skin Clinic we advise our patients to use our Elan Medical DermaCalm range during pregnancy, because they are free from fragrances and preservatives. They also contain mild anti-inflammatory ingredients that can soothe irritated skin.

Acne breakouts during pregnancy

During pregnancy your hormones are all over the place, and that might mean pimples like you had when you were a teenager. The cruel joke, of course, is that many of the treatments that are prescribed for acne cannot be used during pregnancy. Prescription medications like Tetracyclines, Isotretinoin (Roacutane(R)) and the anti-androgen hormone therapies are definite no-nos. And the jury’s out on over-the-counter creams, since they haven’t been tested specifically on pregnant women (yup, you find that a lot with products). Ingredients like benzoyl peroxide and salicylic acid can be absorbed into the bloodstream, so they’re not worth the risk either. “You can safely use lactic acid and biosulfur to treat acne,” Sue Ibrahim says. Don’t touch, pick or squeeze pimples— just wash with a mild cleanser twice a day. “A lot of women find Acne Phototherapy beneficial during pregnancy and it is perfectly safe for both you and the baby.

Sun Sensitivity

Sorry, mums-to-be, but “pregnancy glow” does not refer to a bronzed, sun-kissed complexion. You should actually try to stay out of the sun as much as you can while you’re pregnant. That’s because your surging hormones make you susceptible to dark patches on your skin—known as melasma, or the ‘mask of pregnancy’, which is triggered by sun exposure. So pull out the big floppy hat, find a beach umbrella and be diligent about wearing sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 every day. If you are unlucky and do get Melasma during pregnancy it may resolve on its own following the birth of your baby, if not then you will need the help of a dermatologist I’m afraid.

Stretch marks

Now you’ve got another big skin concern: stretch marks. Anytime someone’s body grows quickly, they’re at risk for stretch marks, so the fact that baby is growing exponentially in there puts you right in the high-risk zone. Of course, not every mum-to-be gets stretch marks. “For most people, whether or not they get stretch marks has to do with genetic predisposition,” says Sue Ibrahim. But you can do your best to head them off by gently exfoliating and thoroughly moisturising your belly, boobs, stomach, hips and thighs as much as you can. As for what moisturizer to use, it’s hard to make a recommendation. “A lot of products make claims,” Sue Ibrahim says. “Some may help but aren’t really proven to prevent stretch marks.” If you are left with troublesome stretch marks following the birth of you baby, it is worth looking into the skin tightening treatments we offer at Elan Medical Skin Clinic.

Skin rashes during pregnancy

If you’ve got red, itchy skin, it’s important not to ignore it. Itchy feet and hands could be a sign of cholestasis of pregnancy, a scary complication that can cause liver problems for baby. Your doctor can do a simple blood test to make sure that’s not causing your rash. Another common pregnancy rash is PUPPP (pruritic urticarial papules and plaques of pregnancy), which often starts in the abdomen and spreads from there. PUPPP is actually harmless to baby, but it will be completely aggravating for you. Book in for a Dermatology Consultation if you are concerned.

Ageing Skin, Turning Back The Clock

Ageing skin is one of the most common concerns that we see at Elan Medical Skin Clinic. If all those expensive serums and cosmetic creams did what they claim to do then why do the women that use these products still complain that their skin is dry, dull, blotchy and wrinkled?

Let’s understand what causes ageing skin

Many things cause our skin to age. Some things we cannot do anything about; others we can influence. One thing that we cannot change is the natural ageing process. It plays a key role. With time, we all get visible lines on our face. It is natural for our face to lose some of its youthful fullness. We notice our skin becoming thinner and drier. Our genes largely control when these changes occur. The medical term for this type of ageing is “intrinsic ageing.”

Reverse the signs of ageing

Let’s look good for our age

We can influence another type of ageing that affects our skin. Our environment and lifestyle choices can cause our skin to age prematurely. The medical term for this type of ageing is “extrinsic ageing.”

  • The sun – UVA and UVB rays are present 365 days per year. USA rays can penetrate through four inches of glass. So think about this when you are sitting next to a window in the office or driving in your car.
  • Smoking –  I know, we are all told how smoking is bad for your health but smoking greatly speeds up how quickly skin ages. It causes wrinkles and a dull, sallow complexion. Why, because the toxins in cigarette smoke replace the oxygen content of your blood.
  • Alcohol – Alcohol is rough on the skin. It dehydrates the skin, and in time, damages the skin. This can make us look older. So drink alcohol in moderation and for every alcoholic drink, drink two glasses of water. This will help to re-hydrate you.
  • Unhealthy diet – Findings from a few studies suggest that eating plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables may help prevent damage that leads to premature skin ageing. Findings from research studies also suggest that a diet containing lots of sugar or other refined carbohydrates can accelerate ageing.
  • Lack of exercise – Findings from a few studies suggest that moderate exercise can improve circulation and boost the immune system. This, in turn, may give the skin a more-youthful appearance.
  • Over Moisturising – Believe it or not, over moisturising the skin will send your skin cells to sleep. When your skin is slightly dry, your skin cells react by producing more collagen. If you over moisturise the skin, you will be inhibiting your own collagen production. Use a sunscreen in the morning instead! Mind you, it needs to be a UVB and UVA Sunscreen of at least factor 30 for it to really protect your skin.
  • Skin Scrubs –  Scrubbing your skin clean can irritate your skin. Irritating your skin accelerates skin ageing process. Gentle washing helps to remove pollution, makeup, and other substances without irritating your skin. Some anti-ageing products prescribed by a dermatologist may burn or sting. When using a prescription anti-ageing product, this can be okay.

Even people who already have signs of premature skin ageing can benefit from making lifestyle changes. By protecting your skin from the sun, you give it a chance to repair some of the damage. Smokers who stop often notice that their skin looks healthier. By taking some preventive actions, we can slow the effects that this type of ageing has on our skin.

There is so much conflicting advice out there

If signs of ageing skin bother you, you may ask a beauty therapist for advice. However, this may result in you spending a lot of money on treatments and cosmetic creams that make no difference to your skin at all.  Why not consult a dermatologist instead? Yes, you will have to pay for a consultation, but you may end up spending a lot less money in the long run. Why? Because prescription skincare contains the right amount of active ingredients that are designed to penetrate deeper into the skin. New treatments and less-invasive procedures for smoothing wrinkles, tightening skin, and improving one’s complexion are giving many people younger-looking skin.

This woman was treated with Restylane skin fillers by Sue Ibrahim. Photos taken 3 weeks apart

Treated by Sue Ibrahim, these photographs were taken four weeks apart.

If you are worried about the effects the ageing process is having on your skin, then why not book in to see Sue Ibrahim. With over thirty years working within the medical and cosmetic dermatology sector, Sue has helped thousands of women and men improve the texture and appearance of their skin. Her professional but friendly approach is well known throughout the industry. Sue will never sell you any treatment that you do not need. As a Nurse Consultant in Dermatology she has won a number of industry awards and constantly receives a string of positive reviews about the treatment and service she provides.

Book your consultation today!


Do you think I have Rosacea?

Rosacea is a common rash, found on the central part of the face, that usually occurs in the mid-thirties or early forties. It can occur in both men and women who have no history of acne as a teenager.

Rosacea is a progressive skin condition that often begins with a tendency to flush (blush). After a while this is followed by persistent redness on the cheeks, chin, forehead and nose, and by crops of small inflamed red bumps and pus spots. Rosacea can also affect the eyes, making them irritated.

A woman considers speaking to a skin expert at Elan Medical Skin Clinics in Essex and central London

A woman considers speaking to a skin expert at Elan Medical Skin Clinics in Essex about her rosacea.

What causes Rosacea? 

The cause of rosacea is not fully understood, but many think that the defect lies in the blood vessels in the skin of the face, which dilate too easily and recent studies are linking rosacea with the Demodex mite, that feeds off of our dead skin cells. Rosacea is more common in women than in men, and in those with a fair skin who flush easily but men tend to get a more aggressive form of Rosacea.

Many things seem to make rosacea worse, but probably do not cause it in the first place. They include alcohol, too much exercise, both high and low temperatures, hot spicy foods, stress, and sunlight. Things that stir up one person’s rosacea may well have no effect at all on the rosacea of someone else. The idea that rosacea is due to germs in the skin, or in the bowel, has not been proved. Rosacea is not catching.

Is Rosacea hereditary?

Rosacea does seem to run in some families but it is still not clear whether heredity plays a big part in this.

What are the symptoms of Rosacea?

Rosacea starts with a tendency to blush and flush easily. After a while, the central areas of the face become a deeper shade of red and end up staying this colour all the time. The area becomes studded with small red bumps (papules) and pus spots, which come and go in crops. Small dilated blood vessels (telangiectasia) appear, looking like thin red streaks. Scarring is seldom a problem.

Other problems with rosacea include the following:

  • Rosacea can lead to embarrassment, anxiety, or depression, and a disrupted social life. 
  • The face may swell (lymphoedema), especially around the eyes. 
  • The nose may grow big, red and bulbous (rhinophyma) due to the overgrowth of the sebaceous glands. This is more common in men than women. 
  • Some people with rosacea have eye symptoms (red, itchy, sore eyes and eyelids; a gritty feeling; sensitivity to light). A few patients with rosacea have more serious eye problems, such as rosacea keratitis, that can interfere with vision. 

How will Rosacea be diagnosed? 

Unfortunately, many doctors can trivialise the effects rosacea can have on a person’s confidence, self-esteem and quality of life. Having spent over 30 years working within medical dermatology, Sue Ibrahim is passionate about treating acne early and effectively as she fully understands the consequences of living this rosacea on a daily basis. At Elan Medical Skin Clinic in Essex, we take the time to listen to your concerns and devise a management plan to get your skin looking great again!

Can Rosacea be cured?

No treatment can be guaranteed to switch rosacea off forever. However long-term treatments control symptoms and can clear the spots and reduce the facial flushing and dilated blood vessels. Treatment works best if started when rosacea is at an early stage.

How do we treat Rosacea?

Many thousands of people have been treated by Sue Ibrahim for their rosacea at Elan Medical Skin Clinic in Essex.

If you are fed up with suffering from acne or any other skin condition, why not book your dermatology consultation now!

Acne, you don’t have to live with it!

Acne is a very common skin problem characterised by blackheads and whiteheads and pus-filled spots. Although we tend to associate acne as a teenage problem, here at Elan Medical Skin Clinic, we see acne in men and women of all ages.

Acne can vary in severity from a few spots on the face to quite a significant problem on the face, chest, shoulders and back.

It is not just the acne that can have a significant impact on self-confidence, the scarring and altered skin pigmentation that is left behind when the spots clear up can also cause a lot of distress.

Aacne treatments at Elan Medical Skin Clinics

Acne, you don’t have to live with it!

Unfortunately, many doctors can trivialise the effects acne can have on a person’s confidence, self-esteem and quality of life. Having spent over 30 years working within medical dermatology, Sue Ibrahim is passionate about treating acne early and effectively as she fully understands the consequences of living this spots on a daily basis. At Elan Medical Skin Clinic in Essex, we take the time to listen to your concerns and devise a management plan to get your skin looking great again!

What causes acne?

The oil-producing (sebaceous) glands are particularly sensitive to certain hormones present in both males and females. These hormones stimulate the production of excess oil. At the same time, the dead skin cells lining the pores clog up the follicles. As a result, there is a build up of oil, producing blackheads and whiteheads. Acne bacteria lives on everyone’s skin and in those prone to acne, the build up of oil creates an ideal environment in which the bacteria can multiply. This triggers inflammation and the formation of red, pus-filled spots that can be quite uncomfortable.

Some acne can be caused by medication given for other medical conditions or by certain contraceptive pills or injections. Some tablets taken by body-builders contain hormones that can trigger acne and other problems.

How will your acne be diagnosed?

There are several varieties of acne that Sue Ibrahim will be able to diagnose at your dermatology consultation. We have extensive experience in dealing with all types of acne. We will discuss the treatment options available to you that can be very effective in preventing the formation of new spots and scarring.

How can acne be treated?

Acne treatments fall into the following categories:

  • Treatment with topical creams (prescription and/or non-prescription)
  • Treatment with oral antibiotics alongside topical creams
  • Treatment with oral hormones that counteract the hormones that can trigger acne
  • Isotretinoin tablets (Often referred to by the trade name Roaccutane (R))

There are also a number of cosmetic dermatology treatments that can help, although these treatments are not usually offered on the NHS:

And there are treatments that can help with scarring:

Many thousands of people have been treated by Sue Ibrahim for their acne at Elan Medical Skin Clinic in Essex. It is our philosophy to work alongside your own GP, or a Consultant Dermatologist to provide the best possible outcome for our patients.

If you are fed up with suffering from acne or any other skin condition, why not book your dermatology consultation now!


Join Elan’s Open Evening in Essex and speak to our skin experts

Join Elan Medical Skin Clinic in Essex for our open evening on October 31st 4pm – 8pm.

Join Elan Medical Skin Clinic in Essex for our open evening on October 31st 4pm – 8pm.

Find out more about PRP skin rejuvenation and Silhouette Soft thread lifting at our open evening

You and a friend are welcome to join our lovely team at Elan Medical Skin Clinic in Essex for an informal social evening on October 31st 4pm – 8pm.

Our Open Evening is an ideal opportunity for you to meet Sue Ibrahim and her team and have a chat with our new award-winning GP, Dr Alex Tran and Amy, our laser therapist.

You will be able to find out more about our new, highly effective facial rejuvenation treatments, PRP stem cell injection therapy and Silhouette Soft Thread Lifting.

There will also be a free prize draw to win a selection of our exclusive DermaActive products.

There’s no need to book – we look forward to seeing you at our intimate and cosy Rayleigh skin clinic.