Dr. Sheu, MD, FAAD is a board-certified medical dermatologist. She enjoys treating patients of all ages and particularly enjoys getting to know the families and friends of her patients. She does not practice cosmetic dermatology (which focuses on skin beauty rather than skin health). New patient appointments are scheduled for up to 15 minutes. Please arrive on time for your appointment so we have sufficient time to address your concerns.


Dr. Sheu practices at Valley Medical Center's Maple Valley clinic on Maple Valley-Black Diamond Road. The reception desk is shared with Urgent Care. Please note, the clinic has moved and Valley Medical Center no longer offers dermatology services in Covington.

Medical Versus Cosmetic Dermatology

As a medical dermatologist, I often get asked about the difference between medical and cosmetic dermatology. Medical dermatology is concerned with diagnosing and treating skin conditions that affect the health of your skin and/or body. Conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, acne, rosacea, blistering skin conditions, and skin cancer fall under this category. Medical dermatologists have extensive training in diagnosing and managing these conditions, and they may use a range of treatments, including topical creams, oral medications, injectable medications, and light therapy. They may also perform biopsies, surgical excisions, or other procedures to remove skin cancer or other growths.


On the other hand, cosmetic dermatology focuses on improving the appearance of the skin, hair, and nails, typically through non-invasive or minimally invasive procedures. Common cosmetic treatments offered by dermatologists include botulinum toxin (commonly known as Botox) injections, dermal fillers, and laser treatment of wrinkles and discoloration. These treatments are designed to enhance the appearance of the skin, reduce signs of aging, and address aesthetic concerns such as acne scarring, uneven skin tone, or fine lines and wrinkles.


It's worth noting that many dermatologists practice both medical and cosmetic dermatology, and some may specialize in one area over the other. However, regardless of their area of focus, all dermatologists are medical doctors who have completed extensive training in dermatology and are qualified to diagnose and treat a wide range of skin conditions.


When it comes to deciding whether to see a medical or cosmetic dermatologist, the choice ultimately depends on your specific needs and concerns. If you're experiencing a skin condition that is causing discomfort or affecting your quality of life, such as severe acne or a suspicious mole, it's important to seek out a medical dermatologist for diagnosis and treatment. However, if you're looking to enhance your appearance or address specific cosmetic concerns, a cosmetic dermatologist may be able to offer a range of treatments to help you achieve your desired results.


In conclusion, while medical and cosmetic dermatology may seem like two separate fields, they are both critical components of dermatological care. By understanding the differences between these two areas of focus, patients can make informed decisions about their skin health and aesthetics and choose the right dermatologist for their needs. both branches of dermatology deal with skin-related issues, they are distinct in their approach and focus.