Questions About Appointments

Do I need a referral?

To claim back from Medicare a valid referral is required fro m your doctor. It is not necessary for you to have a referral, but we do prefer you to have one.

Can I claim back from Medicare?

You can claim back on MBS listed item numbers if you have a valid referral and Medicare card. Most cosmetic procedures do not have an MBS item number and you are therefore unable to claim back on these procedures.

Does Dr Liz Bulk Bill?

No, Dr Liz does not bulk bill. All payments will need to be made at the time of consultation or procedure.

How do I make an appointment?

To make an appointment with Dr Liz Dawes-Higgs please contact the rooms between 8:30am and 5pm Monday to Friday by calling (02) 9958 1555 or you may send us an email with your request.

Will I incur a cancellation fee?

Northern Sydney Dermatology reminds their patients 48 hours prior to an upcoming appointment. As Dr Liz has extensive waiting lists if a cancellation occurs then another patient can be notified to take their place.

We require at least 24 hours notification of any appointment cancellation. If a late cancellation or missed appointment occurs, then a cancellation fee will be issued.

If I have a skin problem, what should I do first?

If you develop any symptoms or concerns regarding your skin, we advise you see your local practitioner. You might find your GP is able to treat your concern. In some cases, your GP will recommend that you seek specialist advice from a Dermatologist to treat your skin condition.

What should I bring to my appointment?

  • A valid referral letter from your GP
  • Medicare card
  • Any scans and tests relevant to your skin
  • A list of your current medications
  • New patients to Northern Sydney Dermatology need to print and complete a New Patient Registraton Form to bring to their initial consultation
  • New patients to the Female Genital Dermatology Clinic need to also print and complete a Genital Dermatology New Patient Form to bring to their initial consultation – (if you have never attended the NSD practice please ensure you complete the New Patient Registration Form as well).

Questions about Skin Conditions

How do sunspots form?

Sunspots are very common and are a result of chronic sun damage. They occur more in people with fair skin and those who spend a lot of time outdoors.

How can we prevent pigmentation?

Pigmentation is where the skin becomes more intense in colour and can be uneven. Pigmentation patches can be small or large. They can be caused by contraceptive hormones, pregnancy, some medications, solar damage and post-inflammation. Pigmentation following inflammation is especially a problem in people with darker skin types. Prevention is mainly by sun avoidance but there are topical creams and pigment reduction lasers.

Would you say that thanks to the sloppy application of sunscreen, when most people receive half the SPF promised on a bottle?

The correct amount of sunscreen an adult should wear is approximately 35mL for the whole body. This is a lot more than people would normally apply. Areas of the skin can be missed when applying as well as wiped off or sweated off which all decrease the SPF.

What are cold sores, and what’s the best way to treat them?  

Cold sores are very common and are caused by the herpes virus. They usually appear on the lips but can occur anywhere on the body. Stopping cold sores spreading is the best form of treatment. If you have an open sore it is important not to share cups or kiss, so the virus doesn’t spread to other areas on your skin and to other people. The infection should clear without treatment however if the cold sore is painful or you are having reoccurring infections, there are tablets which can be taken to reduce this from happening.

What is it dermatitis, and what is the best form of treatment? 

Dermatitis is a general term to describe itchy inflammation of the skin. The skin will present with symptoms such as redness, small bubbling and oozing combined with an itch. Dermatitis can be from genetic atopic dermatitis or a result of an allergic reaction. The best treatments are with topical corticosteroid creams, moisturisers and soap free cleansers. If the Dermatitis is due to an allergic reaction it is best to try and find out what is causing the outbreaks, and this may involve allergy testing.

What is rosacea, and how can you treat it?

Rosacea and sun damage are the main causes for redness in the skin. Tiny dilated blood vessels at the surface of the skin create red lines, blotches and bumps usually in the areas of the nose, cheeks, chin, forehead and the V of the chest. Advancements in vascular lasers can reduce redness in the skin, as well as giving smoother, clearer more youthful looking skin.

What are dermal fillers?

There are many types of dermal fillers, the ones chosen for the liquid lift are made of hyaluronic acid, a substance which occurs naturally in the body. It is long lasting but not permanent and has very limited side effects and minimal allergic potential. It is easy to administer, helping smooth wrinkles and scarring while improving volume loss in an ageing face.

What is Botulinum Toxin?

Botulinum Toxin is a medical grade protein which blocks the muscle from working. It has been around since the 1970’s. There are three types of Botox and there are no considerable differences in adverse events between the three. Botox helps soften and improve lines seen during facial expressions, in particular frown lines, forehead lines and crows feet.