Restylane, the secret to natural looking lips

Restylane is our most popular choice of filler at Elan Medical Skin Clinic. Why?, because 95% of our patients thought that their results looked natural within a few days of treatment.

Restylane at Elan Medical Skin Clinic

The secret to soft, natural lips with Restylane

Both Restylane Kysse and Juvederm Volbella provide soft, natural looking lip enhancements and Sue Ibrahim, our Nurse Practitioner has over fifteen years experience in creating beautiful lips using Restylane, in fact Restylane was the first synthetic filler around 15 years ago.

What kind of product is Restylane Kysse?

It has been specially designed and formulated for injecting into the lips for enhancement and contouring of thin looking lips, the cupid’s bow, or to simply add fullness. It is structured to withstand the range of mouth movements and all Restylane products are completely broken down within the skin over a period of months, eventually leaving no trace of the filler.

Soft, natural looking lip enhancement performed by Sue Ibrahim

How safe is treatment with Restylane?

Providing you are treated by a qualified and experienced doctor or nurse practitioner, you should be in good hands.

Most of our clients only report slight swelling following treatment which normally resolves within a day or two. Occasionally, a small bruise may be seen at the injection site but this normally fades within a week.

Of course, there are risks associated with any skin or lip filler, like temporary palpable lumpiness has been noted after injection. Localised reactions thought to be of a hypersensitivity nature have been reported in about 1 in every 2000 treated patients. Redness, tenderness and rarely acneform papules may occur. In addition in rare cases (in less than 1 in 15,000 treatments) granuloma, superficial necrosis and urticaria have been reported. This is the reason why these procedures should only be carried out by registered medical practitioners in an inspected clinical environment.

Natural enhancement of the upper lip using Restylane

How can you reassure me that Elan Medical Skin Clinic is the right place to come for my Restylane treatment?

Firstly, Sue Ibrahim is a registered nurse, with over 30 years experience in dermatology and almost twenty years working in the medical cosmetic environment. She was also runner-up in the national ‘Nurse of the Year’ Safety in Beauty awards in 2016.

Elan Medical Skin Clinic has been around since November 2000 and during this time, Sue Ibrahim has performed thousands of skin fillers using Restylane and Juvederm.

Elan Medical Skin Clinic is also registered and inspected by The Care Quality Commission and by Treatment You Can Trust. Both of these organisations are backed by the Government in the UK.

Elan Medical Skin Clinic also provides a live feed, so you can view exactly what our clients are currently saying about us. Click here to see our reviews.

If you would like to speak to one of our staff about booking an appointment, please click here.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Elan’s skin expert debunks more skincare myths

A young woman deep in thought - Essex skin expert Sue Ibrahim debunks skin care advice for using moisturisers and detoxing.

Essex skin expert Sue Ibrahim debunks skin care advice for using moisturisers and detoxing.

In our last blog, Sue Ibrahim, a nurse consultant dermatologist and medical director of Elan Medical Skin Clinic in Essex, stressed the importance of only believing scientifically proven advice. This time she takes a look at general skin care tips including using moisturisers and detoxing.

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Allergy tests, are they a waste of money?

Allergy testing has become increasingly popular over the years, in fact we see a lot of people at Elan Medical Skin Clinic who claim that they  have been diagnosed with certain food intolerances. But how reliable are these tests?

The medicines regulator (MHRA) has said there is no scientific basis for tests widely available in health food shops and pharmacies that claim to show food intolerances. In fact the MHRA found that there was “no scientifically valid test to diagnose food intolerance”. Many of the tests confirm the presence of IgG antibodies, which show only that a food has been eaten at some stage, not that someone is intolerant of it!

The MHRA said that attempting to self-diagnose a food intolerance or allergy using a test kit alone could potentially result in a delay in identifying or treating other medical conditions. It added that there was a clear distinction between food intolerance and food allergies, which can be potentially life-threatening.

So what should I do if I think my child has a food allergy?

Before you make big changes to your child’s diet or your own diet, it’s important to proper medical advice, so talk to your GP. If you or your child suffers from severe eczema, there are allergy specialist that you can be referred to on the NHS. If you GP is reluctant to refer, then book in to see Sue Ibrahim at Elan Medical Skin Clinic.

All forms of allergy testing, even when the results seem to be strong, must be considered together with a physical exam and a detailed patient history – both of which can help narrow down what food might be the trigger.

“You have to look at all the pieces of the puzzle because none of the tests by themselves are predictive enough of a diagnosis of a clinical allergy,” Sue Ibrahim says.

The physical exam and patient history also provide important clues, such as symptoms that could indicate whether or not a food allergy is the likely cause.

If you have hay fever you probably don’t need allergy testing as it may be obvious from your symptoms that you’re allergic to pollen. But it’s important to find out the precise cause if your symptoms are more complicated.

For example, perenial rhinitis, – a runny nose all year round – can be triggered by a variety of allergens, such as house dust mites and mould, or a food allergy could be triggered by one of a number of foods in your diet.

Allergy testing can also help monitor a diagnosed allergy. For example, babies and children with certain food allergies often grow out of them.

A test can let the parents and child know they no longer have an allergy to milk or eggs for example, so they no longer have to avoid that food.

Skin-prick testing (SPT) is the most common form of allergy testing and is used to try and identify the specific foods that a patient may be allergic to. Theses tests are only carried out at specialist medical allergy centres and if Sue Ibrahim thinks that you or your child should be referred to for allergy testing, she will refer you.

What is a skin prick test?

Drops of different serums containing individual allergens will be put the on patient’s forearm or back. A medical professional will then use a small needle to prick the skin – this feels like a small poke with a pin – so that the serum goes beneath the skin.

Skin Prick

Skin prick allergy tests are only ever carried out by medical professionals specialist allergy centres.

Then it’s a waiting game. The patient’s skin may react by forming a reddish hive, or wheal, at specific prick spots, indicating that the IgE antibodies in the skin responded to the food allergen in that serum.

A test is considered “positive” for a particular allergen if the diameter of the hive is 3 millimeters or greater than a prick site made with no allergen (known as the negative control). The bigger the hive, the more likely it is that you will react if you eat that food.

Book your appointment today!

Veinwave waves goodbye to thread veins

Most women will develop thread veins at some point in their lives, yet some can become so self-conscious and uncomfortable about the appearance of their veins that it can ultimately affect their self-confidence resulting in a low self-image and even social anxiety. However, simple yet extremely effective procedures such as Veinwave therapy – as featured on GMTV – can remove the appearance of thread veins completely with minimum discomfort and astonishing results.

A woman touches her smooth skin - London skin expert, Sue Ibrahim from Elan Medical Skin Clinics in central London and Essex, soothes your skin this summer

Wave goodbye to thread veins with Veinwave Therapy

What are Thread Veins?

Thread veins – also known as spider veins – are harmless, tiny broken blood vessels often found on the face and legs, and are characteristic of ageing skin. Celebrities including Linda Robson ‘The Birds of a Feather’ actress admit to using cosmetic treatments such as Veinwave therapy to remove the appearance of visible veins on her face and to enhance the look of their skin.

What is Veinwave Therapy and How Does it Work?

We have one of the first nurse practitioners that was trained to use Veinwave at Elan Medical Skin Clinic in Rayleigh, Essex. With over ten years experience using Veinwave technology, Sue Ibrahim is an expert in its application.

Veinwave technology uses a process called Thermocoagulation that can be used to treat spider veins, thread veins, (medically known as telangiectasia) including those on the nose, facial redness, blemishes and spider naevi.

The device uses a fine needle which is inserted into the vein to allow accurate application of the treatment whilst protecting the surrounding skin and tissue. As the needle used in the treatment is so small, most patients only report a mild discomfort during the treatment. A single thread vein may require just one treatment session in order for it to disappear. However, repeat sessions may be required.

Book a  Veinwave Appointment with Sue Ibrahim at Elan Medical Skin Clinic in Rayleigh, Essex

Our Essex based skin clinic is in easy reach of Basildon, Southend, Chelmsford and Brentwood.

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…

Reviews of Elan Medical Skin Clinic

How well do you trust reviews placed on websites? You are probably right in assuming that most medical and cosmetic clinics will advertise their more favourable reviews; claiming that they are the ‘Best Clinic in Essex’ and all you have to do is take a look at their glowing patient reviews. There is no doubt that reading client reviews are encouraged, but how reliable are they? Certainly we prefer recommendations from reliable friends but sometimes we need to find a skin clinic quickly; we don’t have the time to ask around. We can take a look at review sites but most of these sites will rank clinics by how much that clinic is prepared to pay to be at the top of the list.

Reviews

Reliable friends will tell you truth about their experience

Online review sites

When Elan Medical Skin Clinic opened its doors eighteen years ago there was no such thing as online review sites. When What Clinic.com started, we were automatically listed as a medical clinic based in Essex. Gradually we started to receive review of our clinic and all them were published. While the vast majority of those published showed that our patients were satisfied with the service they received, we did receive some reviews that suggested improvements in the way we handled our clients. This constructive criticism helped us to create a more client centred approach to the way worked and we still welcome constructive criticism today.

Facebook reviews

With the rise of social media and Elan Medical Skin Clinic’s own Facebook page, we soon learnt the hard way how damaging a one star review could be. While our happy clients were more than happy to give us 5 stars we were unfortunate to be targeted by Facebook Trolls; these are people that go around leaving one star reviews having never even visited the clinic! These reviews were so frustrating mainly because there is not a lot of things you can do about it. The popular and well know you are, the more likely you are to be targeted by the Facebook Troll.

Trusted reviews

So how do you really get an honest review on how a skin clinic is performing? Well, if the clinic is registered and inspected by a government body as part of the inspection process the inspectors contact random patients and ask for feedback. The Care Quality Commission insist that all patients have the opportunity to provide their feedback to the clinic and if their complaint is a serious one, you can report it directly to them. Treatments You Can Trust are also an organisation that hold a register of inspected cosmetic clinic. They also have a disputes management service, when communications between clinic and client break down. Fortunately we have never had any issues that have required intervention by either The Care Quality Commission or Treatments You Can Trust.

How does Elan Medical Clinic collect treatment reviews?

When a patient or client visits Elan Medical Skin Clinic they automatically receive an email asking for their feedback. This feedback can be given anonymously or not. We receive that feedback immediately and any comments they are are immediately published on our website. If you don’t believe us, take a look at what our patients and clients are currently saying about us now! Just Click Here.

Click here for our latest report published by The Care Quality Commission

Click here for our our entry on Treatments You Can Trust Register

 

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.

skinproblems

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!

 

Help, my child has eczema!

Eczema, also known as ‘atopic eczema’ or ‘atopic dermatitis’, is a skin allergy/condition causing inflammation and intense irritation. When it occurs in young babies and children it can be really upsetting for whole family.

Eczema symptoms tend to be caused by dry skin. Skin that is affected by eczema gets sore and broken when it is scratched. It can look wet and may bleed. Scratching is hard to avoid since the main distressing symptom of eczema is unbearable itching, but once the skin gets broken and cracked, infections can set in, causing even more discomfort.

baby with eczema

Help, my child has eczema!

What Does Atopy/Atopic Mean?

There are many types of eczema and dermatitis:

  • Atopic Eczema / Atopic Dermatitis
  • Discoid Eczema
  • Contact Dermatitis

Atopy, or being atopic, means having a genetic tendency for your immune system to make increased levels of IgE antibodies to certain allergens. An atopic individual is likely to have more than one allergic condition during their lifetime, such as eczema, asthma, hay fever or food allergy.

Can Food Allergies Cause Eczema?

Children are born with the tendency to have eczema, and many things can make their eczema worse. These are known as eczema ‘triggers’. Eczema in children can have various triggers, of which food can be one, especially in babies. However, foods are not the primary cause of eczema.

How can we help at Elan Medical Skin Clinic?

We all understand the pressures that GPs are under. One of the biggest problems is the pressure of TIME. At Elan Medical Skin Clinic in Essex our Dermatology Nurse Consultant, Sue Ibrahim, has over 30 years experience in helping children and their families cope with the day to day struggles of coping with eczema. She can help you identify the trigger factors in your child and thoroughly discuss the treatment options open to you. No, she cannot cure eczema but she can work with your GP to ensure that a management programme is in place and that exacerbations of eczema are dealt with quickly and effectively.

How to help us diagnose an allergy

The first step in managing an allergy is identifying the cause(s) of the problem. Diagnosing allergy can be difficult since the symptoms may be similar to other conditions. If you think your child may be allergic to something and do not know what it is, you should start to keep a record of the symptoms. In particular, the following information may help us make a diagnosis

  • Do the flare ups occur at any particular time of the day?
  • Does your child only get symptoms at certain times of the year?
  • Does your child suffer more at night time or during the day?
  • Do the flare ups occur when your child is in the house as well as outside?
  • Does exposure to animals bring on the symptoms?
  • Do you think that any food or drink brings on the symptoms?
  • Do the symptoms occur every time your child comes into contact with the allergen?
  • Do the symptoms improve when you are on holiday?

If you are at the end of your tether, and would like a consultation to discus your child’s eczema, our friendly team are here to help. Contact us today!