The Need for a diagnostic, clinical approach in Medical Aesthetics and Laser Skincare

Sarah examining Visia 2
Dr. Kennea examining a spectral skin analysis during the consultation phase

Patients who are new to Medical Aesthetics, often confuse what we do with the beauty industry, beauty & day spa’s. In actuality, the differences are significant, and not without inherent risk.

The first priority in our clinic is patient safety. There are too many aspects to this to list in totality for this article, but suffice to say photography plays a pivotal role in our decision making. 

As physicians and clinicians, our first priority is almost always, diagnostic in nature. Every patient undertakes a 45-60 minute private consultation, during which we ascertain a full medical history, list medications, ailments, allergies etc and then we take photographs. Lots of them!

We don’t take photographs on an iPad or an iPhone, we learned long ago that that does not work. We use a Spectral Imaging system called Visia, and a professional automated camera system called Intellistudio; that has both non-polarized and cross-polarized lighting.

Cross-polarized lighting eliminates specular highlights and improves the ability to see skin features. Both systems are HIPAA-compliant ensuring patient privacy and protection. Dr. Kennea explains more in the following video….

A Diagnostic Approach mitigates risk to Patients

For an injectable treatments, we use the Canfield Intellistudio professional photography studio.  Intellistudio allows us to analysis every angle, and every aspect of the face in unimaginable detail. We take dozens of photographs from different angles, expressing different emotions. Intellistudio allows us to record 50MP DSLR photographs, that are instantly recorded in a HIPPA compliant database; not an iPhone storing on iCloud for anyone to see or steal!! 

For skin tightening, skincare and laser treatments every patient has three hyper-detailed photographs on a multi spectral imaging system called Visia. We take front, left 45 and right 45 capturing the entire face in incredible detail. Visia allows us to see your skin, and to see what the naked eye cannot. 

Images captured by Visia

Our clinicians are qualified Nurses and Medical Aestheticians with degrees in dermal studies, supported by a Medical Doctor who works in house. Their knowledge and expertise, allows them to view these highly detailed images diagnostically. Our Medical Director is always in clinic, providing a wealth of experience and expertise and an inherent fail safe system for our clinicians to discuss results with. 

A couple of prime examples….

Example 1

About once a week, a regular skin analysis for a laser / light treatment is referred to our Dermatologist for a suspicious mole or lesion identified by our staff during the initial consultation phase.

It is so incredibly essential to identify these pre-cancerous lesions at the first opportunity. Why? Well, lasers change the way our skin appears. Thats’s their job. When any form of diagnostic ability is absent, and treatments forge ahead, the appearance of suspicious moles & lesion are changed. This change in appearance may quite literally be enough change that a physician or dermatologist misses an early diagnosis. It is essential to identify suspicious potentially cancers lesion at an early enough stage for intervention. 

We had a patient in last year, who was quite literally weeks away from a lesion on her neck being inoperable, and the life threatening cancer growing there spreading. Dr. Kennea identified it instantly and her diagnosis quite literally saved that patients life.

This happens not infrequently! 


Example 2

Only this past month, a patient was chatting with our consultant prior to an injectable treatment. Our clinician commented on changes to her skin, and the patient commented on having had a laser done at a day spa. Our clinician pointed out that she had Melasma, and was surprised to learn that the patient not only did not know that she had Melasma, but did not know what Melasma was. Laser treatments can exacerbate Melasma, and make it even harder to treat. It’s imperative that patients get the right treatment and the right support.

A Safety First Approach

This is the need for an accurate diagnostic approach from the outset. This is why we take a very considered approach to any treatment that can change your skin, face, injectables or body sculpting. This is why we have inv eased over a hundred thousand dollars in our photography systems. It keeps our patients safe, and it feeds us the information needed for the most effective outcomes. 

At Whistler Medical Aesthetics® you can be assured that our approach is purely medical. Patient safety is always, always at the forefront of everything we do; and for very good reason. 

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