Interview with Natasha Atanaskova Mesinkovska, MD, PhD
Vice Chair, Clinical Research
University of California Irvine
In this installment of Under Your Skin, Dr. Nick Brownstone chats with Dr. Mesinkovska about her favorite disease to treat and which innovations in dermatology she’s most excited about. He also gets a helpful tip on one way to increase efficiency in the office.
What is your favorite disease to treat and why?
Dr. Mesinkovska replies that her favorite disease to treat is alopecia areata because dermatologists finally have a treatment for it. With JAK inhibitors revolutionizing the field, she finds it very satisfying to be able to assure her patients that there is now a treatment available.
She also notes the positive effects of dupilumab for children with atopic dermatitis.
She comments that with the development of baricitinib, the field of alopecia areata has experienced a game-changing event. She also reflects on the positive developments for other types of alopecia that have benefitted from the development of oral minoxidil. She remarks that she’s hopeful more JAK inhibitors will enter the market.
What innovations in dermatology are you most excited about?
Dr. Mesinkovska remarks that she’s happy treatment for chronic inflammatory diseases has shifted from injectables to oral treatments taken daily and that dermatologists are able to treat people more effectively with fewer injections.
In the realm of aesthetic devices, she is also pleased about the development of micro-coring technology, which uses needles big enough to puncture skin and remove tissue but heal without a scar. She remarks that this technology can likely help tighten not only faces, but bodies as well.
In the past 5 years, what is 1 thing you’ve done to increase your efficiency in the office?
Dr. Mesinkovska explains that she realizes what she likes to do and how many people she wants to see, and she accomplishes this by recognizing her own worth. She comments on the urge doctors often have to be people-pleasers but recognizes that she can raise her own value by raising her prices and choosing to see 1 patient instead of 3. This allows her to dedicate more time to that patient and leave the exam room feeling less burnt out while not sacrificing any value monetarily.