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Physicians and Estheticians: A Rewarding Partnership

By: Carl Thornfeldt, MD, FAAD
Posted: January 28, 2011, from the February 2011 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.

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1. Estheticians who work with physicians should take a more scientific approach to skin care. Take the time to educate yourself about dermatology and medical terminology to reinforce the physician’s trust in your abilities. Other related experience or training in related medical fields may help, as well.

2. Practice clinical methods when working with a physician, using sterile techniques and time-tested modalities.

3. Respect when a patient needs dermatological attention instead of esthetic care. Never try to second guess a physician’s diagnosis or protocol, and admit when you don’t understand something. The working relationship between physician and esthetician must be based on mutual honesty, trust and respect for each other’s professional standing.

4. If you ever have a question, such as why a particular protocol was followed or diagnosis given, ask privately, in a diplomatic manner, away from patients and other employees.

5. When looking for a working relationship with physicians, it is important that they are board-certified or board-eligible in their specialties. Associate yourself with an established specialist who respects an esthetician as a true skin care professional.