Dr. Konstantinos Pagidas shares his plans for the clinic

At the beginning of 2017, a new Derma-Act dermatology clinic will open in Sofia. The team of dermatologists has set the ambitious goal of completely changing the perceptions of this field, giving wider access to quality dermatological services and building habits for proper skin care. This is what Redmedia was told by the founder of the clinic Dr. Konstantinos Pagidas.

Dr. Pagidas, you announced that you are about to open an innovative dermatology clinic in Sofia. What new skin care methods are you going to you offer that are not yet available in Bulgaria?

– Yes, it’s true. We are already planning an official opening in January. I can talk at length about the clinic. But most importantly, I want it to become a place where there is an exchange of knowledge between different specialists, and for the patients themselves to feel that they are cared for not by one doctor, but by a whole team of doctors who approach them with sincerity and care. I would be very happy if we manage to overcome the stereotype that we are setting up a clinic to do aesthetic procedures. Our idea is to offer people what they really need.

I do not claim that the clinic will be innovative in terms of therapy, but I am sure that it will be innovative in terms of the active relationship with the patient, and especially with children. I would love for more people to have access to quality care, where attending one of the most highly-equipped and luxurious clinics is no cause for concern or inconvenience. All patients should walk in and out of the clinic feeling like they got the best, because at the end of the day, when it comes to health, we all deserve it.

You said “especially with children” – what do you mean?

– It is my wish, and I have directed my efforts, to have a special time for children at our clinic, in which free examinations are offered. What is most lacking is people’s awareness. They do not distinguish the nuances and the specific course with which dermatological diseases in childhood proceed, such as atopic dermatitis, allergies, infectious diseases such as chicken pox. In addition, many parents worry about the time they have to spend waiting in line outside doctors’ offices. So I want to skip all that and make it easy to access the clinic without leaving patients with the feeling that seeing a doctor is difficult.

Will you be working with the Health Insurance Fund on dermatological clinical pathways?

– We want to work with the Health Insurance Fund, yes. We have already submitted the necessary documents.

From what countries are the international specialists you have planned to invite, and who will be the first one?

– For now, the name of the first specialist remains a secret. But we have spoken to colleagues from Greece and Italy. With Italy, we are at the “discussion” stage, while we already have very good relations with our colleagues from Greece and have taken the first steps towards a partnership. Among them there are those who are narrowly specialized in specific areas of our activity.

In your experience, what are the most common mistakes we make when it comes to skin care?

– This is a very wide-ranging question. Many people do not know that they are allergic to the detergents with which we wash our clothes. Every person is different, and so is their skin. Therefore, we must treat each specific case with special attention.

What are the habits that every person should develop for proper skin care? In what situations should we seek a consultation with a dermatologist?

– Consultations with a dermatologist are best done preventively once a year, as we get used to our skin very easily. For example, we can easily accept something that is not right as a part of us, and at the same time it turns out to be a health problem. One of the most common such occurrences is moles. A mole may be thought to be harmless, but turn out to be malignant. It is good to have the same skin doctor follow up with us and consult us when more special care is needed. I can give another example – a person may have dandruff, but not realize that it is an allergy, seborrheic dermatitis, an allergy that can be treated in a short period of time with appropriate cosmetics or drug therapy.

Your recommendation is to go for a dermatological prophylactic examination once a year, correct?

– Yes. Just like people are used to seeing a cardiologist once a year. Our skin is no less important an organ, it is the most important 2 square meters in our life.

What are your impressions – do Bulgarians look for a specialist doctor only in case of an advanced manifestation of a certain dermatological problem, or do they go to consultations timely?

– The best treatment is the one that begins at the beginning of any disease. It is no coincidence that you have probably heard the expression “a good medical history is half the cure” – and this is possible at the very onset of the problem. Because the longer a disease is allowed to develop, the harder it is to deal with it. And my impressions are that all people delay or keep putting off seeking dermatological help. And this does not apply only to Bulgarians. No one schedules examinations timely. The situation has to reach such an uncomfortable level for the patient, so as to make them go for an examination. The whole process takes place in several stages – manifestation of the problem and an attempt to self-medicate, then switching to natural treatment, and after all this does not help and the condition worsens, only then is a dermatologist sought. That is why I want to emphasize again and return to the preventive visit once a year. Look at it as an investment, an investment in your health and peace of mind.