We are now open, but taking precautions during the pandemic.

Benign Lesions

Dr vanVliet has a strong interest in all things skin and is a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.

Earlobe Repair

Earlobes can become elongated and thin with attenuated pierce sites as a normal process of aging. We can accelerate this process if we wear heavy earrings or have deliberately stretched our earlobes with plugs. Occasional pierce sites tear and the torn earlobe develops a cleft deformity. These are all amenable to surgical repair, under local anesthesia, with minimal scar and with excellent restoration of earlobe shape. Surgery does mean you temporarily lose your pierce site but you will be able to re-pierce the ear within 3 to 6 months of your surgery. Recovery time is minimal and sutures are usually in for 10-14 days. Dr vanVliet also manages ear keloidal scars with a combination of treatments.

Moles

Moles, also referred to as nevi are generally harmless and can be raised, flat and a variety of colours ranging from brown, pink, tan and even blue. Moles rarely degenerate into cancer but they do change over our lifetime. Hormonal fluctuations, like during pregnancy or puberty, can incite growth of moles. Often as we age our moles become paler but more prominent – so that mole that was our ‘beauty mark’ in our 20s may become the prominent mole we get removed in our 50s. Dr vanVliet is adept at keeping incisions minimal and well aligned to minimize the appearance of scarring after mole removal. Commonly, stitches will be required. Occasionally, shave removal with a radio-frequency instrument will be utilized.

Sebaceous cysts

A sebaceous cyst is a benign growth that occurs when a sebaceous (oil) gland, in the deep skin layer, becomes plugged. Oil accumulates in the small gland or sac and as it does so it grows and becomes more prominent. Although they rarely cause symptoms or cause problems they can occasionally get tender. They can occur on any skin surface but most commonly on the face, scalp and upper back. Surgical excision removes the entire cyst and sutures will be required. Dr vanVliet keeps her surgical scar as small as possible so that you will have minimal scar. Recurrence rates after surgical excision are less than 1%.

Lipomas

Often referred to as the ‘carbuncles of Life’ these raised, waxy and warty lesions are common. They are benign and not contagious. There seems to be some familial predilection for developing them as we age, so likely there is some genetic basis for them. They often are numerous and may become irritated given their superficial ‘pasted on the skin’ appearance. They most commonly arise on the face, neck and trunk. These are amenable to local excision with sutures or with a shave removal of them – Dr vanVliet will determine the best approach for you based on their location and size.

Seborrheic Keratoses (SK)

Often referred to as the ‘carbuncles of Life’ these raised, waxy and warty lesions are common. They are benign and not contagious. There seems to be some familial predilection for developing them as we age, so likely there is some genetic basis for them. They often are numerous and may become irritated given their superficial ‘pasted on the skin’ appearance. They most commonly arise on the face, neck and trunk. These are amenable to local excision with sutures or with a shave removal of them – Dr vanVliet will determine the best approach for you based on their location and size.

Scar Revision: Scar Wars

Prominent scars commonly arise following trauma, burns, surgery or even from small inciting events such as acne flares or ear piercings. How a scar heals after an initial inciting injury has a lot to do with:
• Mechanism of injury: Surgical incisions are made with the least amount of trauma and their orientation can be carefully planned to reduce the risk of thick scar formation. Traumatic injuries such as dog bites, or burns tend to create thicker scars.
• Orientation of the injury
• Anatomical location: The central chest, earlobes, and joint lines (knees, shoulders) are more predisposed to prominent, thick scars.
• Gene stock: Certain ethnicities are more predisposed to thick scars and potentially keloidal scarring. In general, the darker the skin – the higher the risk of thick scar formation.
• Wound care: How you care for your injury in the acute setting really is incredibly impactful on how well you heal. Friction, desiccation and lack of appropriate protection following an injury or surgery can complicate early wound healing and contribute to poor scar formation.

As a Board Certified Plastic surgeon, Dr vanVliet is an expert in creating minimal scars during elective surgical procedures. She understands wound healing and how to create optimal conditions for uneventful healing with minimal scars – both intra- operatively and in the post-operative period.
Often Dr vanVliet is asked to manage patients with established problem scars. The management of these scars is multifaceted and will require full assessment by her in order to design an optimal treatment plan. Treatment options may include topical silicone, compression garments, steroid injections, light and laser therapy, or surgical revision. If you have scars of concern; whether they be acne scars, earlobe keloids or surgical scars – Dr vanVliet can help!

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COVID-19 Procedures

We are Open!

We are opening our doors and we are looking forward to having you back to Spring Skin! Know that we have been working diligently behind the scenes to create and implement safety protocols that will safeguard you, our team and our community.

We are continuing to work closely with local authorities so that we can continue to offer our personalized service while keeping you and our team safe.

This is not business as usual but we will be working hard to accommodate all our patients in a timely fashion. As we transition our practice back, the clinic hours will be more restricted and all clinic visits will be by appointment only. We will be reaching out to all our patients that we need to reschedule. If you would like to schedule an appointment or have questions please contact us:

Email us: info@springskin.ca
or contact us by phone: 250-931-3110

For scheduled visits, we have implemented additional safety measures, over and above the standard universal precautions that are the norm in our practice. It is important that our clinic is a safe place for you and for our team. Key to this will be honouring social distancing where we can and we will schedule patients accordingly. For procedures where we cannot distance we will be utilizing standard OR protocol and PPE’s to reduce the risk of acquiring COVID through closer encounters. If you have any questions regarding these safety measures please do not hesitate to contact us.

In preparation for any patients, scheduled for a clinic appointment, we ask that you confirm the following information by phone PRIOR to coming to our office: 

  • Do you have any cold or flu-like symptoms, specifically fever, cough or shortness of breath? 
  • Have you come into contact with anyone who has these symptoms or who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 or the flu? 
  • If yes to any of the above questions we ask you to defer your appointment with us at least 14 days. We appreciate your cooperation and will be happy to assist you with any rescheduling required.

Along with our usual universal precautions practices, we’re adopting the following hygiene precautions: 

  • You may enter the clinic by appointment only. Our office manager will call / text when it is appropriate for you to enter the clinic 
  • We would ask that you: 
  • do not bring in more personal items than is required 
  • do not bring in food / drink containers 
  • limit visitors to just yourself or one care-giver if required 
  • come with a protective mask; we will provide one for you if you dont have one 
  • Be on time for your appointment: our scheduling of patients is to optimize social distancing and patient safety – it is unlikely we will be able to accommodate early or late arrivals. 
  • Hand sanitizer is available at the reception desk. We will ask each patient to sanitize their hands upon arrival at the clinic. 
  • We have medical grade hand sanitizer through the office so please feel free to clean your hands. 
  • We will usher you into private treatment rooms upon your arrival to optimize social distancing. 
  • Our staff is trained and equipped with their PPE to ensure every one’s safety. 
  • We wash our hands between each individual patient and each procedure. 
  • All clinic surfaces, and equipment are disinfected before and after every patient visit 
  • You can expect that we do not have unwell staff at work in the practice, which has been a longstanding policy. 

We will continue to monitor the Ministry of Health guidance closely and maintain regular communication with you as we navigate through these challenging times together. Stay Smart, Stay Safe and we look forward to hearing from you soon!


Thank you,

Dr Deborah vanVliet

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