Weill Cornell Dermatology Center for Diverse Skin Complexions (CDSC)

Clinical Services: Dermatology
Upper East Side
1305 York Avenue, 9th Floor
New York, NY 10021
(646) 963-0033
(646) 962-3376 (DERM)
Northwest Brooklyn
38 6th Avenue, 4th Floor
Brooklyn, NY 11217
(646) 962-3376 (DERM)
Upper East Side
211 East 80th Street, 2nd Floor
New York, NY 10075
(646) 962-3376 (DERM)

About Us

The Weill Cornell Dermatology Center for Diverse Skin Complexions (CDSC) was founded to provide excellence in the diagnosis and management of conditions of the skin, hair and nails that are either more prevalent or of particular concern among populations with skin of color.

As one of the few centers in the United States specializing in richly pigmented skin or skin of color, we focus on optimizing the medical, surgical, and cosmetic care of patients with a diverse array of skin complexions.

The CDSC is comprised of dermatologists at Weill Cornell who have expertise in how the manifestations of dermatologic conditions can vary across the diverse spectrum of skin tones and specialize in the optimal therapeutic approaches to managing them.

We are proud to provide individualized care to patients of all backgrounds. We are passionate about closing historical gaps in education, patient care, and research in populations of color.

Conditions We Diagnose and Treat

Some of the more common dermatologic disorders we treat include:

●      Acne

●      Acne Keloidalis Nuchae (firm scars on the back of the scalp)

●      Dry skin (xerosis)

●      Eczema

●      Hair loss (including, but not limited to central centrifugal cicatricial alopecia (CCCA), traction alopecia, alopecia areata, frontal fibrosing alopecia, lichen planopilaris and discoid lupus)

●      Hyperpigmentation (dark skin discoloration) or hypopigmentation (light skin discoloration) of the skin, or other causes of “uneven skin tone”

●      Keloids and hypertrophic scars (enlarged, thick scars)

●      Melasma

●      Mole evaluation

●      Nail disorders

●      Pseudofolliculitis barbae (razor bumps)

●      Psoriasis

●      Seborrheic dermatitis (dandruff)

●      Skin cancer

●      Skin cysts

●      Vitiligo

Early Skin Cancer Detection for Diverse Skin Complextions

The rates of skin cancer are rising more quickly than any other cancer type, affecting all genders and ethnicities.

People of all colors can develop skin cancer, even if you never sunburn. Skin cancer may appear differently depending on the type of cancer, as well as your skin color, skin tone, age and other factors.

When skin cancer develops in people of color, it is often diagnosed at a more advanced stage — making it more difficult to treat. However, when detected early, skin cancer treatment is highly effective. The dermatologists at the CDSC are highly experienced in detecting skin cancer and precancerous lesions in patients with all different skin colors and tones.

Cosmetic Procedures

We offer specialized cosmetic procedures for the specific needs of patients with more heavily pigmented skin. Our patients appreciate our meticulous and culturally sensitive care.

Our services include:

      Neurotoxins (Botox, Dysport, Jeuveau) and injectable fillers (Juvéderm, Restylane, Belotero, Revanesse Versa) for facial volume loss and wrinkles

●      Laser hair reduction (Gentle Max Pro Nd:YAG laser, safe in darker skin tones)

      Chemical peels for acne, uneven skin pigmentation and skin rejuvenation

●      Microneedling for acne scarring, uneven skin pigmentation and skin rejuvenation

●      Fraxel Dual laser (Andrew Alexis, MD only) for acne scarring, treatment of wrinkles, and skin rejuvenation

●      Clear and Brilliant laser (Andrew Alexis, MD only) for uneven skin tone, melasma, postinflammatory hyperpigmentation, skin rejuvenation, enlarged pores, fine lines.

      Removal of unwanted skin growths (skin tags, dermatosis papulosa nigra, seborrheic keratoses, cherry angiomas, skin cysts)

      Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) injections for hair loss

Clinical Trials and Studies

The CDSC is dedicated to conducting research in dermatologic conditions that have a special impact on patients with darker skin tones. As part of that work, we occasionally offer clinical trials, which can give patients access to treatments that may not be available anywhere else. View the Department of Dermatology’s open clinical trials.

Open Studies

We are conducting a study examining activation of an inflammatory pathway in a severe form of hair loss that affects women of African descent called central centrifugal cicatricial alopecia (CCCA). We are looking to recruit women aged 18 years and older with this condition who are willing to donate 1-2 small biopsies of affected skin for analysis. We are also looking to recruit women of African descent aged 18 years and older who are willing to donate 1-2 small biopsies of healthy scalp skin for analysis. Compensation of $120 per biopsy will be provided for time and trouble. This study has the potential to make important contributions toward a greater understanding of CCCA and the development of improved ways to treat this disease.

This study has been approved by the Weill Cornell research board and ethics committee (IRB# 21-05023521).

If interested, please contact the Study Coordinator: Jennifer Vu at (646) 962-7275 or jtv4002@med.cornell.edu, 1305 York Avenue, New York, NY 10065 

Meet Our Physicians

We look forward to meeting you and addressing your concerns!

Our team has taken every step to keep our facilities safe for you to continue your dermatology care. Learn more about our safety measures and efforts to enhance your patient experience.

For more information about the Skin of Color Society and resources about skin conditions common in more heavily pigmented skin, visit https://skinofcolorsociety.org/

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