Philippine Dermatological Society

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Pearls on Personal Branding and Phototherapy: “The Skin.. The Light.. and ME”
By Lily Lyralin Laconico Tumalad, FPDS* and Alma Gay Concepcion Tavanlar Amado, FPDS

*PDS PhotoDermatology Interest Group; Active consultant Phototherapy Unit: East Avenue Medical Center, Delos Santos Medical Center and Rizal Medical Center


A high yield LEAP activity entitled “The Skin.. The Light.. and ME” was held last August 6, 2018 at Joy Nostalg Oakwood Ortigas in Pasig City.  Scalp psoriasis, phototherapy and personal branding were among the topics discussed.

Unique to this event, PDS had the pleasure of having Professor Peter van de Kerkhof, chairman of the Department of Dermatology, University Medical Centre Radbound in Nijmegen, Netherlands.  He was the past president of the International Psoriasis Council and had been working for many years on the pathogenesis and treatment of psoriasis.

“THE SKIN”. Prof. Kerkhof discussed the new and relevant advances in the management of scalp psoriasis. These included descaling with 5-10% salicylic acid, initial and maintenance treatment with calcipotriol/corticosteroid combination, corticosteroid solutions (intermittent application during maintenance phase), tar shampoo and zinc plus selenium sulphide shampoo.  For recalcitrant scalp lesions, systemic agents and biologics were recommended.

“THE LIGHT”. Dr. Bernardita O. Policarpio, past head of PDS phototherapy subspecialty core group, gave the second lecture on the application of phototherapy in the clinical setting.  She thoroughly discussed the goals of phototherapy, its treatment regimen including dosing, frequency and dose adjustment, as well as its possible risks. She also shared some tips on how to optimize UV light absorption and how to minimize adverse events.

During the open forum that was moderated by Dr. Lorna F. Frez, both speakers emphasized that even with the advent of newer therapies, phototherapy remains an essential treatment modality for various dermatological diseases, including psoriasis.  Likewise, it was highlighted that home phototherapy is not encouraged due to its difficulty in monitoring patients and greater chance of overuse at home. 

“ME”.  Ms. Rachel Santos, a renowned marketing executive, gave an interesting talk on effective personal branding for medical professionals. Sharing her principles in effective personal branding, she reiterated finding out what you want and being best at it, like wanting to be the dermatologist who helps the poor with our hearts and/or being abreast with modern state of the art treatments.  She shared that it is important to be clear, authentic, different and consistent as a dermatologist. She advised that we brand for the long haul and create a buzz around ourselves. Armed with these personal branding professional advice combined with ethics, we can all show that we are truly DermAuthorities.

The program concluded with the townhall meeting and PDS updates on the current issues in the medical profession presided by our very own PDS president, Dr. Angela M. Lavadia.

We are grateful to Leo Pharma for sponsoring the event.