What is dermatology?

Dermatology is the branch of medicine that deals with the diagnosis and treatment of skin diseases. Dermatology developed in the 18th century as one of the sub-specialties of internal medicine; Since every skin rash was suspected to be syphilis at that time, this specialty was primarily associated with the diagnosis and treatment of venereal diseases.

Contemporary dermatology became an independent branch of medicine only at the beginning of the 20th century, after the discovery of an effective drug treatment for syphilis.

The fact that the signs of disease on the skin could be easily observed enabled dermatology to become an independent branch of medicine in a short time, but the scientific foundations of this branch were only laid by the Austrian physician Ferdinand von Hebra in the middle of the 19th century. It is Hebra who proposes an approach in skin diseases based on microscopic examination of pathological changes in the skin.

The dermatologists who followed Hebra focused their work on the identification and classification of skin diseases.

In the 1930s, a new approach to the biochemistry and physiology of these diseases, pioneered by Steven Rothman, led to the development of more effective treatment methods in the second half of the 20th century. With these methods, dermatology has succeeded in controlling fungal diseases of the skin, early diagnosis and treatment of skin cancers, chronic skin diseases such as pemphigus and lupus with redness, and psoriasis.

The first dermatology researches in Turkey were initiated by Zambako Pasha during the reign of Abdülmecid I. In 1889, a separate department of dermatology was opened in Mekteb-i Tıbbiye-i Şahane, which was established in 1849. With the 1933 University Reform, he was brought to the head of the Skin Diseases and Syphilis Clinic of Istanbul University Faculty of Medicine and brought the disease named after him to the medical literature. Hulusi Behçet was one of the first Turkish physicians to hold a chair in medical faculties. The first dermatology chair in Istanbul was followed by the Skin Diseases and Syphilis Chair of Ankara Medical Faculty, which was established in 1945; All medical faculties established after that date have a dermatology chair.