As with other health issues, if you notice problems with your skin, it’s important that you address them as quickly as possible. While a bug bite or a pimple might not be a big deal, there are other symptoms that indicate a deeper issue that can lead to discomfort and scarring. Here are a few common dermatology emergencies that may require you see a dermatologist in San Diego.


Also known as herpes zoster, shingles occurs when a chickenpox infection returns to the patient from latently infected cells that reside in the brain or spinal cord. Often, sufferers will confuse its onset with a painful sensation that results from a musculoskeletal injury, but within a couple days, they’ll notice a blistering rash that’s the sure sign of shingles. Antiviral drugs taken within 48 hours can reduce the amount of pain caused by shingles, but it can be prevented entirely with a vaccination.


One of the most common types of allergic skin reactions, hives (also known as urticaria) is usually the result of antibodies residing within the bloodstream that are reacting to foreign substances. The hives themselves are bumps that can appear anywhere on the body as an extremely itchy rash. Each bump may last no more than 8 to 12 hours, but as they recede, they may be replaced by new ones. Ultimately, the condition will disappear on its own within approximately 8 weeks and can be treated with oral antihistamines for pain relief.


If you notice the appearance of dry, red, scaly bumps, you may have psoriasis. Psoriasis is a genetic and chronic condition, that’s incurable, with flare-ups that arrive and disappear on their own. There are, however, several different kinds of treatments available, such as UV light exposure, topical creams, and laser surgery.


Eczema (also known as dermatitis) is commonly noticed in patients in early childhood, and is identified by itchy, dry skin that, in extreme cases, can develop into oozing sores. Much of the time, eczema can be found on the inside of the arm opposite the elbow and in leg creases behind the knee. Many sufferers of eczema have allergies that affect their respiratory system, such as hay fever, and the treatments include topical steroids and the application of emollients to wet skin.


A primary symptom of rosacea is a flushed, red face characterized by dilated blood vessels and pustules. It might resemble the acne that one gets as a teenager but is more common in adults than children. Rosacea is a sign of the skin’s extreme sensitivity to inflammatory chemicals that occur in the body naturally, and it can be treated with oral and topical medications.


It’s not a coincidence that a lot of teenagers have acne because it occurs in varying degrees to everyone as they go through puberty. While often believed to be the result of dirty skin, the pimples and pustules of acne are actually the result of hormones that start to circulate due to puberty.

The best way to treat these kinds of emergency skin conditions is by making an appointment at Academic & Aesthetic Dermatology Consultants. We’re experts in emergency dermatology in San Diego, CA, and can treat these and other skin problems with procedures such as laser therapy and chemical peels. Give us a call at (858) 292-7525. We offer same-day appointments!