Articles, Blog

Seborrheic Keratosis: What It Is and How to Get Rid of It

August 30, 2019

The whale is a beautiful and majestic
creature. But sometimes its beauty and comfort is marred by the presence of
barnacles on its surface. Turns out, humans get a version of barnacles, too.
And I have a whale of a tale about mine. (upbeat music) When I have a slightly embarrassing skin
issue, I like to talk to Dr. David Bank, my dermatologist. I can tell him anything.
He’s almost more like a shrink than a derm. Dr. Bank: Oh my god, she’s back in the office again? This one is a whacko! Cheryl: I’m here today because I have some really ugly, splotchy-looking things on my back . Dr. Bank: You? Impossible. Cheryl: It’s possible. David, you told me that these are called seborrheic keratoses. What the heck is?
Dr. Bank: Those are common spots that basically, most of us get with time. They
are just overgrowths of dead skin cells that come to the top. They should fall
off, but they get a little sticky and they just stack up on themselves. Cheryl: (shudders) Oh my god. They’re so nasty, you guys. Is this a genetic issue? Dr. Bank: It’s a combination of
genetic, but it is so common that basically we see it in many lighter skin
people. Cheryl: Is there anything that I could have done to prevent them? Is this sun-induced in any way? Dr. Bank: Again, it’s a combination, again, of genetics, as you mentioned, and
certainly sun exposure. So, if you had a time machine and could go back and you wore all the sunscreen you should have been wearing back then, then you probably
would have a lot fewer but it wouldn’t necessarily be none. Cheryl: Ahhh So, how are we
gonna treat this because it’s, I mean, really you guys when you see it you’re
gonna be like, Oh yeah, that’s pretty gross. Dr. Bank: Well, okay, first and more important, though, is they don’t technically have to be treated because the good news is,
they’re not dangerous to your health. However, a lot of people like yourself
don’t like them, so they’d like them removed. There are a number of different
ways to do that. Probably one the simplest is just something called
old-fashioned liquid nitrogen which is just nitrogen gas from the air chilled
to be super-cold and we just touch them with a little Q-tips things for a second.
They’re not gone immediately, but then over the next week or so they scab and
fall off. Cheryl: So sexy. Um, and what are the other ways you can treat them? Dr. Bank: They can
be treated using electric cautery and also with laser. Cheryl: What is the least painful method? That’s what I want. Dr. Bank: It all stings little bit but they’re all really honestly about the same. Cheryl: Should I be treated with narcotics before we remove them? yes in fact you get you some Dr. Bank: Yes, in fact, we’ll get you some propofol and you’ll have a really fun time. I’ll take some, too. No… (laughter) (music) I’m a model, you know what I mean? And I do my little turn on the catwalk. Yeah on the catwalk. On the catwalk, yeah, I do my little turn on the catwalk. Dr. Bank: Very cold. It’s so cold sometimes people say it feels hot so it might sting a little here we go. (music) Help! I need somebody Help! Not just anybody Help! You know I need someone! Help! When I was younger so much younger than today I never need…I never needed anybody’s help in any way Cheryl: Arghhhhh! Dr. Bank: Okay! You’re doing fantastic. Cheryl: What? There’s more? How much more? Are we halfway there? Dr. Bank: We’re more than halfway there. Cheryl: Okay, I can take it. I can take it. Dr. Bank: Almost done. (music) But now these days are gone and I’m not so self-assured But now I find…Now I find I’ve changed my mind, I’ve opened up the doors Cheryl: What happens now? Dr. Bank: Basically, you don’t
have to think about them. It’s maintenance-free, as I said before, so
bottom line is, you can run, jump, swim, play, do whatever you want, and over the next few days to a week or so, you’re just going to make little scabs, crust up, fall off. The only thing I ask is, please, don’t pick at them. Cheryl: (huffs) David, if somebody wanted your
services, what would they do? David: Well, they could go to our website, which is the Or they could just call us at 914-241-3003. (upbeat music) Cheryl: It isn’t often I interview people with
no bra, but.. well, you’re wearing one. Cheryl: Oh, you dick! Dr. Bank: That’s Dr. Dick to you. (upbeat music)


  • Reply Mary McCarty March 10, 2019 at 3:08 pm

    I got rid of some by dabbing with lavender essential oil once a day

  • Reply Susan Thomas May 20, 2019 at 10:20 pm

    Hilarious! Thanks for sharing. I had one of these at my hairline and got rid of it the same way – not happy to hear that I will likely get more. Ick!

  • Reply Zoraida Catherine Navarro June 25, 2019 at 9:43 pm

    Loved this so much I shared it on Real Self. I have known patients who have died of skin cancer because they were petrified to see a dermatologist. Thanks for the upbeat but very accurate portrayal of this subject. I am sure it will encourage patients to see their doctors and get reassurance and improve their self image once these "barnacles" are removed.

  • Reply Blue Pill July 5, 2019 at 3:56 pm

    Sexy sideboob action yeahhh

  • Reply גבי מימון July 24, 2019 at 11:21 am

    there is a new treatment for seborrheic keratosis its call eskata

  • Reply michael p August 1, 2019 at 2:49 am

    Ok well insurance doesn't cover this so how much? I have at least 25 I'd like removed

  • Reply Suzi B. August 7, 2019 at 12:31 am

    Uh oh, I had a rather large, over 2 cm., seborrheic keratosic spot removed almost 2 weeks ago. Now it is a grayish color, but the top part has already fallen off. I picked at it…..

  • Reply Kara August 12, 2019 at 10:09 pm

    I've been dealing with these spots on my back for several yrs now & yes I've had the nitrous oxide treatment. but they still grow back. So this treatment does not kill them off. I'm looking for something more permanent?

  • Reply Little Raven August 14, 2019 at 6:28 am

    I had one on my cheek and it disappeared when I put Resveratrol serum from the Ordinay on it. I got that serum from a friend to try out on my sebaceous hyperplasia which are not gone yet but definitely shrunk.

  • Reply Dawn Faialaga August 18, 2019 at 4:06 am

    What happens if you pick them I do sometimes 🤣

  • Reply Jon Boll August 19, 2019 at 6:58 am

    The information given in this video by the doctor is inaccurate and misleading. SKs are NOT caused in any way by sun exposure. AKs on the other hand ARE! How a dermatologist can make such a flatulent expression of falsity on a video channel designed for widespread public consumption is disheartening at best. An actinic keratosis (ak-TIN-ik ker-uh-TOE-sis) is a rough, scaly patch on your skin that develops from years of exposure to the sun.

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