At Pariser Dermatology Specialists, our goal is to equip patients with the information they need for a successful appointment. Your experience at our office is our number one concern, and our top priority. This list of frequently asked questions should help you prepare before, during and after your appointment. We hope to make you as comfortable as possible when seeing our dermatology experts. Whether you’re experiencing a minor skin issue, or in need of a more serious medical treatment, we look forward to assisting you.
Have a question that we haven’t covered below? Please give our office a call at 757-622-6315 and we’d be happy to help.
How often should I have a skin examination?
This is one of our most frequently asked questions. The answer depends on your risk for skin cancer. In general, a yearly skin examination is an important part of a good health maintenance program, but individuals at very high risk due to a personal or family history of skin cancer may need to be seen more often.
I’m not sure whether or not I should be concerned about a specific skin issue, should I come in?
Whenever you have a concern related to your skin, hair or nails, we absolutely recommend calling us at 757-622-6315 and asking us about it. A Pariser team member will let you know whether or not we suggest coming in to see one of our providers.
Am I allowed to request a specific doctor for my next appointment?
Yes, absolutely. We understand that skincare is personal, and we want you to see the medical professional on our care team that you prefer.
How long do appointments last?
There isn’t one standard length of time for our patient appointments. The duration of your visit depends on many factors, such as the reason for your appointment and the severity of your health concerns.
How far in advance should I book my next appointment?
We recommend that you schedule your future skin cancer screening appointment as you check out of each appointment. We’ll give you a reminder card and will text you reminders as your date draws near.
Will my appointment be covered by my insurance company?
Our office team can help you determine whether your appointment is covered by your insurance. We also recommend giving your insurer a call and inquiring about your specific coverage prior to your dermatology office appointment.
Why do I have a copay charge on my bill?
Copays are due at the time of service. The copay charge is assessed when we have to send a statement to collect your copay that was not paid when you came in. Each statement may generate an additional charge for unpaid copays. If you always pay your copay at the time of service, you will never see this charge.
Why is my copay higher when I see your doctors?
Many insurance companies have a separate specialist copay written into their policies. In other words, they require a higher copay when you see a specialist. Although we disagree with these higher copays, we are obligated to collect the copay amount your insurance policy assigns.
Why do I have a copay for a follow up visit?
Every return visit is a follow-up visit, whether it occurs in a few days, weeks or several months from the initial visit. All office visits, with the following exception, require a copay. The only time you don’t have a copay for a return visit is if you had a procedure that is in a surgical global period. If you return to the office while in a global period for unrelated concerns, you will be charged a copay.
Treatment Related Questions
Why can’t you just take a mole off and not send it to pathology?
Although our doctors are very proficient at looking at skin lesions and determining if they are suspicious, they cannot know for sure if a lesion is malignant without a pathological examination. The tissue must be examined to determine whether it is benign or malignant. If malignant, the examination also tells us what type of malignancy and if it has spread. The removal of any lesion without pathological examination is not consistent with the standard of care for board certified physicians. The pathology exam is a necessary protection for both the patient and the physician.
I have already had skin cancer once, what are my chances of getting it again?
Studies have shown that individuals who develop skin cancer once are at higher risk of getting another one within the next five years. Strict sun avoidance and regular follow-up visits are very important.
Do you treat patients of all ages? What about kids?
Yes, at Pariser Dermatology Specialist, we treat both men and women as well as patients of all ages, which includes pediatric dermatology services.
What if I have a general question, can I call and ask your office team?
Yes, we always welcome your questions. Depending on the nature of your question, a member of our office team may recommend booking an appointment to see one of our medical providers, or have one of our medical providers contact you directly to discuss you inquiry. We also offer a secure texting system. You can text us at 804-463-5148.
I have heard that we need sunlight to make vitamin D. Will I or my children become vitamin D deficient just because we avoid the sun and wear sunscreen daily?
In general, the answer to this question is NO. We recommend that you eat a proper diet, take a daily vitamin supplement, and minimize your ultraviolet exposure as much as possible.
How do I know whether or not a mole is a concern?
We recommend that you keep an eye on your “skin spots” while keeping the “ABCDE’s of Melanoma” in mind:
- “A” stands for Asymmetry: melanoma lesions are often irregular; one half looks different than the other half.
- “B” stands for Border: melanoma lesions usually have irregular borders
- “C” is for Color: the presence of more than one color or the uneven distribution of color on a skin spot can sometimes be a warning sign.
- “D” refers to Diameter: melanoma lesions are often greater than 6 mm in diameter (approximately the size of a pencil eraser).
- “E” stands for Evolution: If a mole is changing in color and/or size, have a dermatologist examine it.
The next time you’re in one of our offices ask for a printed bookmark containing The ABCDEs of Melanoma. It’s one of our most frequently asked questions. If you are still not sure if a mole is atypical, schedule an appointment with one of our dermatology specialists to have it checked out.
How can I tell the difference between psoriasis and eczema?
Although some skin conditions may have similar symptoms, such as itchy, dry patches of skin, it’s important to determine an accurate diagnosis. This will ensure that proper treatment can be administered and your skin issue can begin to be resolved as quickly as possible. Seeing one of our physicians is the best way to determine what a particular skin condition may be, from psoriasis to eczema and more.