Sunshine; The Devil You Know

Everybody loves sunshine and natural light helps boost serotonin, the natural feel-good chemicals in the brain.  However the suns ultraviolet radiation (UV rays) in New Zealand are the most harmful in the world and I guess unless skin cancer is a reality for you or to someone close to you it doesn’t really hit home for most of us. For a long time we Kiwis were unaware of the damage we were doing to our skin by spending too much time in the sun using little or no sun protection. Long summer days spent at the beach are what we dream of all winter.

Although these photos look idyllic the facts are that skin cancer is by far the most common cancer in New Zealand and the worst part is skin cancer is preventable.

The suns UV rays does nothing to help our good looks. They damage the skin by breaking down proteins, collagen and elastin that keep the skin firm and youthful.  Pigmentation and skin spots give you that uneven skin complexion; the list of the damaging results caused by ultraviolet radiation goes on and on.  An SPF sunscreen is an absolute must, re-applying during the day and not just during the summer months.  The ugly truth is that sun damage goes further than skin deep and is so much more then what you see on the surface.

Years ago as children we never seemed to understand the possible consequences of severe sun burn and it is hard to know whether there was not enough information about sun damage or ignorance about what can happen with long-term effects of sun exposure.  Now we have a better realisation of what damage the suns UV rays can cause and we can change the 1 in 3 cancer statistic in New Zealand.

So here at The Face Clinic we aren’t just a Botox® and Filler clinic. Dr Tim Wilkinson specialises in different aspects of your skins health. Not only is Dr Tim Wilkinson an expert in removal of moles and other skin lesions but we also offer a Picato® gel treatment. Picato® gel is a prescription medicine used topically (on the skin). It is similar to other topical treatments such as Efudix and Aldara which treat sun damage.

The Picato® gel treatment is not for appearance purposes but to treat solar keratosis and preventing development of non-melanoma skin cancer. This is a treatment focusing on sun damage specifically solar keratosis and your skins future health.

Solar keratosis is thickened scaly patches of skin caused by too much sun exposure. Solar keratosis is also known as actinic keratosis. It is quite common for solar keratosis to be on the scalp, face and hands.  If these benign lesions are left there, there is a possibility of them progressing into cancer. Picato® gel treatment has approximately an 80% cure rate.

The Picato® gel treatment contains the active ingredient ingenol mebutate. The ingenol mebutate in Picato® gel treats the lesions in the area where the gel is applied. This procedure improves your skin by treating both visible and invisible (under the surface of the skin) solar keratosis. The Picato® gel is applied to the skin each day over a three-day period.

This treatment is for specific clients. You will need to have a consultation with Dr Tim Wilkinson to see if this is suitable for you. If you have skin with visible solar keratosis this could be a possible treatment that you will benefit from.

These photos may look intense but treating sun damage is far less scary than cancer.  Better the devil you know than the devil you don’t.

Picato® treatment

picato-pic-1Prior to Picato® treatment

picato-pic-4Day 1 after Picato® treatment


To have a consultation and discuss this treatment with Dr Wilkinson


phone: 092664477


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