The mission of the Boston University Department of Dermatology is to serve as a leader in education, research, and patient care for skin health and diseases of the skin. We are committed to excellence in patient care, teaching, and generating new knowledge about normal and diseased skin, and are committed to innovation in all of our endeavors. We strive to meet the highest standards of academic excellence and place particular emphasis on innovation in our research and teaching programs as well as clinical care, with a specific focus on caring for underserved urban communities and a diverse patient population. Ultimately, we expect that our work will provide insights into the basic mechanisms underlying the development of skin diseases and lead to novel approaches to the diagnosis and treatment of skin diseases, which will improve the lives of our patients and those of the millions of patients who suffer from cutaneous disorders worldwide.
The Department of Dermatology at Boston University provides dermatology care to inpatients and outpatients at Boston Medical Center, patients in Boston neighborhood health centers, the Jamaica Plain Veterans Administration Hospital, and Commonwealth Avenue clinics, as well as additional clinics in the Greater Boston area. Faculty use eConsult Telehealth to provide dermatology advice to health providers. The department occupies a 36,000 sq. ft. building on the Boston University Medical Campus adjacent to the Chobanian & Avedisian School of Medicine, School of Public Health, Henry M. Goldman School of Dental Medicine, and Boston Medical Center, the principal teaching hospital. Faculty and clinical associates offer expertise in practically all subspecialty areas within dermatology, including: skin oncology, photopheresis, dermatologic surgery, rheumatologic-dermatology, phototherapy, laser and cosmetic surgery, alopecia, skin ulcers, wound healing, pediatric dermatology, acne, disorders of pigmentation and ethnic skin, psoriasis, eczematous disorders, and autoimmune diseases. Departmental researchers are leaders in fields such as malignant melanoma, cutaneous lymphoma, non-melanoma skin cancer, wound healing, diseases of the hair, rheumatologic-dermatology, MOHS surgery, and diseases of skin of ethnic origin.
The Dermatopathology section processes over 20,000 biopsy specimens every year. The section makes use of state-of-the-art equipment, including the virtual slide scanner. Laboratory services include routine histology, immunofluorescence, immunoperoxidase, and a computerized video image analysis system, as well as access to a confocal microscope and advanced laser-capture microdissection on campus. The section also has an extensive set of teaching slides and a 10-headed teaching microscope with a video monitor.
The department provides dermatologic training to:
- medical students
- dermatology residents
- international physicians in degree and nondegree programs
- residents in primary care, family medicine, internal medicine, and pediatrics (lectures and clinical rotations)
- practicing primary care physicians
- clinical fellows in cutaneous oncology and dermatopathology
- pre- and postdoctoral research fellows in cell and molecular biology and preventive oncology
International Graduate Training Program in Dermatology
The department offers this program to teach international medical graduates state-of-the-art clinical practice of dermatology and related sciences of cutaneous biology with the goal that graduates will then advance care for patients with skin diseases in their home countries.
Two tracks are possible:
- Degree programs, including the Master of Science and Doctorate programs leading to a university degree for international physicians who desire specialization in dermatology to become specialists or consultants in their home countries
- A nondegree certificate program for physicians who seek one year of general dermatology or specialty dermatology training
MSc in Dermatology
The major component of this program is clinical exposure with bedside teaching under full faculty supervision. The core theory of this two-year program includes coursework in:
- Clinical dermatology
- Clinicopathological correlations
- Structure and function of the skin
- Cutaneous microbiology
- Foundational dermatologic surgery
While students enrolled in the Doctorate Program will spend the first two years doing coursework in clinical dermatology with direct patient contact and in classroom settings, the major portion of the third and fourth years of this program is devoted to original clinical and/or laboratory-based independent research under the guidance of a faculty member to fulfill a rigorous thesis requirement. This includes literature review, experimental design, publication(s) of research findings in peer-reviewed journals, and writing of a high-quality thesis. In addition, 8 credits of coursework at the Boston University School of Public Health are required. All students who are not previously formally trained in statistical methodology are strongly advised to take at least one statistics course offered by the School of Public Health as competence in statistical analysis of research data is required.