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Joleen Volz grew up in Upstate New York and moved to North Carolina in 1997, where she received her Bachelor of Physician Assistant Studies from East Carolina University in 2003. Following her undergraduate work, she began work as a dermatology physician assistant in Wilmington, North Carolina, at Lower Cape Fear Dermatology Clinic, PA. During this time she continued to further her education and received a Masters of Physician Assistant Studies of Dermatology in 2006. In 2009, she moved to Texas to further her career with U.S. Dermatology Partners.
She is certified by The National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants and is licensed by the Texas Medical Board. She keeps up her medical education and remains up to date on all new advances in dermatology. Most recently, she completed a rigorous comprehensive dermatology course to become an SDPA Diplomate.
Outside of dermatology, Joleen Volz enjoys spending time with her husband, Matt, and two daughters, Alyssa and McKenzi.
Actinic Keratosis, also known as solar keratosis, is a scaly or crusty lesion on the skin that develops slowly and indicates the presence of sun damage. It is most commonly found on parts of the body frequently exposed to the sun including the bald scalp, face, ears, lips, backs of the hands or forearms, neck, and shoulders.
Actinic keratoses are considered precancerous and can develop into a type of skin cancer called squamous cell carcinoma. In fact, some 40 to 60 percent of squamous cell skin cancers begin as untreated actinic keratoses.
Because of this, your doctor should be diligent in diagnosing, treating and monitoring actinic keratosis.
Basal Cell Carcinoma, also known as basalioma or basal cell cancer, is the most common type of skin cancer and carries the least amount of risk, though it still requires attention. If caught and treated early, basal cell carcinomas are not likely to be life-threatening, but they do have the potential to cause disfigurement of the skin tissue.
Almost one million new cases of basal cell carcinoma are diagnosed each year in the U.S., and up to 30% of Caucasians may develop basal cell carcinomas in their lifetime.
Skin cancer is considered low risk when the affected cells remain clustered in a single group. Both basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma are rarely life-threatening. Though it is unlikely to spread to other parts of your body, if left untreated, basal cell carcinoma can move into nearby bone or other tissue.
Basal cell carcinoma typically begins as a small, shiny bump on the face, although it can occur on any part of the body.
Melanoma, the deadliest of skin cancers, only accounts for about 4 percent of all skin cancer cases, but causes about 79 percent of skin cancer deaths.
Melanoma is a cancer of the skin that begins in the melanocytes, which are the cells that produce the pigment melanin. It is the leading cause of cancer death in women 25 to 30 years old and the second leading cause of cancer death in women 30 to 35 years old.
In some cases, melanoma occurs in melanocytes throughout the body, even if those parts have never been exposed to the sun.
Skin cancer is a common concern in the U.S. Estimates reported by the American Academy of Dermatology suggest one in five people in the U.S. will develop some form of skin cancer. Merkel cell carcinoma is among the rarest forms of skin cancer, wherein estimates by the Skin Cancer Foundation suggest that only one in 130,000 people in the U.S. will be diagnosed with Merkel cell carcinoma. Like melanoma, Merkel cell carcinoma is an aggressive form of skin cancer with a high mortality rate. As with most potentially aggressive malignancies, early detection is the best way to decrease the risk of death associated with Merkel cell carcinoma. You can learn more about diagnosis and treatment options for Merkel cell carcinoma on this page.
Merkel cell carcinoma is a rare form of skin cancer that arises from Merkel cells, cells that reside deeper in the skin and function to send ‘touch’ signals from outside the skin to the inside of the body. The diagnosis of Merkel cell carcinoma is ultimately made by an assessment under the microscope after a skin biopsy has been performed. Skin biopsies are interpreted by dermatopathologists, doctors who specialize in evaluating skin under the microscope. Dermatopathologists are well equipped to make this diagnosis accurately when skin tissue is submitted in a biopsy specimen. Unfortunately, when Merkel cells become cancerous, they also become aggressive. Merkel cell carcinoma can metastasize (spread) quickly, making it one of the most aggressive types of cancer. While treatment for Merkel cell carcinoma may be successful, even with treatment Merkel cell carcinoma may evade what appears to be disease remission, and recur.
A rare and aggressive form of skin cancer, sebaceous carcinoma is sometimes referred to as sebaceous gland carcinoma, sebaceous gland adenocarcinoma or meibomian gland carcinoma.
Sebaceous carcinoma can develop in any sebaceous glands, which lubricate the skin, but it most often begins on or around the eyelids. If it is found and treated early, treatment is often successful. However, if sebaceous carcinoma spreads, it can be deadly.
Because sebaceous carcinoma can appear to be a benign growth such as a stye, diagnosis is often delayed, which increases the risk of death. If you notice a growth on your eyelid, it’s important to make an appointment with your dermatologist. The sooner sebaceous carcinoma is diagnosed and treated, the better the outcome.
Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the U.S. with more than 3.5 million cases diagnosed each year.
Skin cancer is the result of uncontrolled growth of abnormal skin cells that takes place when skin cells suffer DNA damage and then mutate, causing them to multiply rapidly and form malignant (cancerous) tumors. Most skin cancers develop on the visible outer layer of the skin (the epidermis), particularly on sun-exposed areas such as the face, head, hands, arms and legs. They are usually easy to detect with a skin examination, which increases the chances of early diagnosis.
There are different types of skin cancer, each named for the type of skin cell from which they originate. The most common type of skin cancer is basal cell carcinoma. Almost one million new cases of basal cell carcinoma are diagnosed each year in the U.S. Most skin cancers fall into one of three categories:
There are often warning signs that cancer is developing. The most common are pre-cancerous lesions called actinic keratoses that often develop on sun-exposed areas. These tumors replace normal surrounding tissue and generally do not spread to other areas.
Skin cancer is considered low risk when the affected cells remain clustered in a single group. Both basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma are rarely life-threatening.
Skin cancer is considered a high risk when cells have invaded surrounding tissues. The third most common skin cancer, malignant melanoma, can be life-threatening if not diagnosed and treated early.
If skin cancer is detected before it has spread to surrounding tissues, the chances of a complete recovery and cure are excellent. High-risk forms of cancer like melanoma require more aggressive treatments.
Squamous Cell Carcinoma is a common form of skin cancer that develops in the squamous cells that make up the outer layer of the skin. Although it is usually not life-threatening, it can be aggressive in some cases.
If left untreated, squamous cell carcinoma can grow large or spread to other parts of your body, causing serious complications.
Acanthosis Nigricans is a condition that causes the skin to become discolored in the creases and folds of your body. This dark colored skin sometimes becomes thickened and often shows up in the armpits, groin and the folds of the neck.
If you’ve struggled with moderate to severe acne, including cystic or nodular acne, you know that many common acne treatments aren’t effective for everyone. Fortunately, the physicians at U.S. Dermatology Partners commonly prescribe Accutane (isotretinoin) for the treatment of those patients with acne that is unresponsive to other therapeutic options.
Acne is a dermatological condition caused by inflammation and mild infection in clogged pores. If not properly treated, acne can cause emotional distress, low self-esteem, and depression. In severe cases, it can even lead to permanent scarring.
While not a serious physical health threat, acne is an embarrassing skin problem that can be life-altering for many patients. Though it is most common among teenagers, acne can affect anyone, regardless of age or gender, and can be mild, moderate or severe.
Alopecia Areata, also known as spot baldness, is a type of hair loss in which your immune system attacks hair follicles. This leads to areas of baldness on the scalp and body. In severe cases, a person with alopecia may even lose the hair of their eyebrows and eyelashes.
Athlete’s Foot earned its name because this contagious fungal infection is commonly seen in athletes, who may wear sweaty socks for long periods of activity. It affects the skin on the feet and, left untreated, can spread to toenails and even to your hands.
Related: 5 Common Foot Rashes
If you’ve noticed new skin growths, lumps, or bumps, chances are you’re dealing with a lesion. But, to know whether or not the lesion is benign, you’ll need to consult with a professional. At U.S. Dermatology Partners, our skilled dermatologists can partner with you to determine the type of lesion and help you decide if treatment is necessary for your condition. To get started, simply fill out our online scheduling request form, and a U.S. Dermatology Partners team member will be in touch to finalize the details of your visit.
Benign lesion is an umbrella term that may reference any number of non-cancerous lesions of the skin. These lesions may develop on any part of the body with soft tissue. They are classified (named) according to their specific sets of features, where they develop, and other characteristics. Determining if a lesion is non-cancerous requires an accurate diagnosis from a dermatologist.
Cold sores, which are also called fever blisters, are groups of blisters that appear on the lip and around the mouth. The blisters may break open and leak a clear fluid and then scab over. They may take up to two weeks to heal. They are caused by the herpes (HSV) virus.
Contact dermatitis is a common skin condition that impacts millions of people. At U.S. Dermatology Partners, we can help patients who struggle with contact dermatitis and other skin conditions to address their symptoms and look and feel their best. You can learn more about contact dermatitis on this page or by scheduling a consultation with a U.S. Dermatology Partners office location in your area.
Cysts are pockets of tissue (sacs) that may become filled with pus, fluids, skin cells, and even air.
They are fairly common on the skin and can appear anywhere on the body. Cysts may feel like a pea under the surface of the skin, but without removal, they can grow significantly larger over time. In most cases, cysts are not painful, and they grow slowly. There are different types of cysts as we’ll discuss in the next section, and the vast majority of these skin growths are benign (not cancerous). Not all cysts will require treatment, but it is vitally important to have any lump under the skin evaluated and diagnosed by a board-certified dermatologist because some soft tissue malignancies (growths that are cancerous) can present like a cyst. Before recommending removal or other cyst treatments, your dermatologist will examine the growth to determine whether it is likely to cause you pain, become infected, or otherwise lead to skin health issues.
Dandruff is a condition of the scalp which causes flaking and itching of the skin. It is more common in people with the skin conditions seborrheic dermatitis, psoriasis and eczema, and also can be a reaction to hair or skin products.
Epidermoid cysts are the most common type of cyst. They are normally benign and do not typically cause any serious health concerns. However, if epidermoid cysts are in an unfortunate spot or they’re painful, infected, or inflamed, your dermatologist, at U.S. Dermatology Partners, may recommend treatment. You can learn more about epidermoid cysts on this page or by getting in touch to schedule a visit. You can get started by completing our simple online scheduling form whenever you’re ready.
Head lice is a common condition, especially among children. While it may sound creepy or embarrassing to have small mites (or nits) in your hair, it’s actually a very manageable condition that is typically easy to treat right at home. On this page, you can learn more about how to get rid of lice from your head and your home.
Herpes simplex virus, often referred to simply as HSV, is an extremely common viral infection impacting millions of people in the U.S. alone. While there’s no known cure for HSV, some treatments have proven effective in minimizing the number and severity of flare-ups. You can learn more about HSV, its symptoms, and treatment options on this page. You can also work with one of the knowledgeable professionals at U.S. Dermatology Partners to create a treatment plan. To get started, simply complete our online scheduling request form. One of our team members will be in touch soon to finalize the details of your treatment plan.
Milia is a commonly occurring skin condition that causes small bumps on the skin, and while these bumps may be irritating, the skin condition is harmless. You can learn more about milia, how it’s treated, and when to visit your dermatologist for help managing this skin condition on this page. If you have questions or want to schedule an appointment at U.S. Dermatology Partners, we invite you to take a few moments to complete our simple online request form.
Telemedicine, also known as online dermatology, telehealth, or teledermatology, is the use of telecommunications technology to provide care across a distance. This includes using the Internet, cell phones, SMS messaging and even satellites to allow physicians and patients to communicate medical information. This technology has been available for over a decade now, but as it has gotten better and better, telemedicine has now become much more available, easy to use, and secure. If used in the right way, it is one of the best ways that we can improve access to care.
Because dermatology is a very visual field and a specialty in high demand, patient access is often challenged by long wait times. Meeting a dermatologist online can be a great way to provide patients with increased access to skin care. Teledermatology involves the use of real-time video streaming, or more commonly the transmission of still images, pictures, and video in combination with a patient’s medical information collected via questionnaire. Teledermatology can be utilized in many ways including physician-to-physician consultations, triage, follow-up care, and patient education.
Vitiligo is an autoimmune disease in which white patches of skin appear on different areas of the body. This happens when melanocytes, the cells that make pigment in the skin, are destroyed. In addition to the skin, it can affect the mucous membranes of the mouth and nose as well as the eyes. Its cause is not known.
Warts are benign, non-cancerous growths that appear on the skin as the result of a virus called human papillomavirus, or HPV. They are contagious and are spread by contact – either with the wart or something that touched the wart. Cut or damaged skin is more vulnerable to warts.
Related: How to Identify a Wart
Botox, the commercial brand name for botulinum toxin (BTX), is an injectable cosmetic dermatology treatment that reduces the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles on the face.
Unlike injectable wrinkle fillers, which work by filling a crease in your skin with another substance, Botox actually relaxes targeted muscles to reduce the look of lines in the face. This results in smoother skin with a more youthful appearance.
Each Botox injection relaxes key facial areas by temporarily paralyzing specific muscles. This temporarily removes wrinkles and improves the look of laugh and frown lines, skin bands on the neck, crow’s feet, forehead creases and more.
Although it was originally developed to treat eye muscle disorders, Botox has become popular cosmetically and this is now its primary use. In fact, Botox injections are now the most common cosmetic treatment in the U.S., with 6.3 million procedures done in 2013. Because Botox inhibits the release of certain neurotransmitters, it is also sometimes used to treat chronic migraines.
Loss of facial fullness and volume is one of the many age-related changes that people want to address with their dermatologist. From store-bought topical treatments to advanced dermatologic and surgical procedures, there are numerous cosmetic dermatology treatments available to help restore youthful volume. However, dermal and soft tissue fillers are often the most conservative and impactful solutions to restore volume without undergoing more invasive treatments. There are many different types of dermal and soft tissue fillers, and each one is formulated to address a specific area or issue related to volume loss. You can learn more on this page.
At U.S. Dermatology Partners we offer premier dermatology services for patients of all ages. Book your appointment today to find the best facial filler treatment for you and your skin, using our simple, online scheduling request form.
Dysport is a prescription injection used for the temporary improvement in severe frown lines between the eyebrows. As the muscles relax and prevent contractions, wrinkles in and around the brow and frown area will disappear.
Dysport, also known as Reloxin, is made from a neurotoxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum; it is the same neurotoxin used in BOTOX Cosmetic.
Juvederm is a group of injectable dermal filler gels made from hyaluronic acid and used to correct for moderate to severe facial wrinkles and folds or to provide contour. Different types of Juvederm are:
Kybella is an injected treatment that targets fat stores below the chin (double chin). It is one of the best available, non-surgical treatments for double chin, and the knowledgeable dermatologists at U.S. Dermatology Partners are proud to offer this minimally invasive cosmetic dermatology option for our patients who are interested in improving the appearance of their jaw and facial structure without undergoing unnecessarily invasive surgical interventions. If you’re interested in learning more about Kybella, please take a few moments to fill out our appointment request form to schedule a consultation. One of our team members at the office nearest you will be in touch to discuss the details of your visit.
Latisse is a product designed to help grow eyelashes and has been on the market since earning FDA approval in December 2008. It is designed to help grow longer, lusher eyelashes and is available only by prescription.
We all want our skin to be smooth, flawless, and firm, but aging, sun exposure, acne, chronic skin conditions, and other issues can lead to rough, uneven skin tone and texture. Many people think that invasive cosmetic procedures or surgeries are the only options to improve the skin, but microneedling offers a minimally invasive solution to promote collagen production and healthy skin growth for a smoother and more youthful appearance. At U.S. Dermatology Partners, our dermatologists offer microneedling to help individuals look and feel their best without the need for more invasive procedures. When you’re ready to get started, contact the U.S. Dermatology Partners location near you to schedule your cosmetic dermatology consultation. We look forward to hearing from you.
Over the years, dermatologists have worked to create personalized cosmetic dermatology plans, and in many cases, that included combining common treatments. One of the most often recommended combinations was for patients to combine microdermabrasion and chemical peels to receive the optimal results from both procedures. In time, this combination of treatments has become its own unique cosmetic dermatology service called a micropeel. To learn more about micropeel treatment from U.S. Dermatology Partners, keep reading the page below or complete our simple online request form to schedule a consultation with one of our knowledgeable cosmetic dermatologists.
Microneedling has quickly become one of the most popular cosmetic dermatology solutions available at U.S. Dermatology Partners, and as this innovative treatment continues to evolve, our dermatologists are dedicated to investing in and utilizing the most innovative and effective microneedling devices and systems. MicroPen EVO by Eclipse is one of the most impressive new microneedling technologies on the market, and we’re proud to utilize this device in many of our dermatology practice locations. You can learn more about MicroPen EVO by Eclipse treatment at U.S. Dermatology Partners on this page or by reaching out to schedule a consultation with one of our knowledgeable dermatologists.
Platelet-rich plasma therapy, or PRP, is a non-surgical method of skin rejuvenation that uses your own blood to improve the appearance of facial tissue.
Recent research has shown that PRP is also effective at treating alopecia.
Sclerotherapy is an outpatient procedure performed by a board-certified dermatologist. It is used to treat varicose and spider veins in the legs. Sclerotherapy involves injecting a solution directly into the vein. The solution irritates the lining of the blood vessel, causing it to close when compression is applied.
Skin lightening is a process used for people who want to lighten certain areas of skin that are affected by such things as melasma, age spots or even freckles.
Varicose veins are bulging, bluish veins that look like cords running under your skin and are typically found in the legs and feet. Swollen and twisted veins are considered superficial varicose veins. Although they are usually harmless, they often are painful and can become disfiguring. If they become inflamed, they will be tender to the touch and may prevent proper circulation.
When circulation is affected, it can cause such things as swollen ankles, aching legs and itchy skin.