Intersections Between Climate Change and Dermatology


Misha Rosenbach, MD, discusses how rising temperatures and climate change, issues of public health concern, are relevant to the field of dermatology.

Climate change is an issue of public health concern that has and will continue to have far-reaching consequences. Human activities and emissions have led to the buildup of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and, as a result, a marked elevation in global temperatures.

Over time, these increased temperatures will lead to transformations of climates across the world, thus disrupting ecosystems and potentially affecting individual and societal quality of life. Therefore, the urgency of the situation falls on everyone, particularly healthcare providers—regardless of specialty.

As dermatologist Misha Rosenbach, MD, of the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, noted, the climate change discussion is relevant for the field of dermatology. In fact, the dermatologic health of patients may be directly and indirectly impacted by these issues in question.

In this episode of Derm Discussions, Brad Glick, DO, spoke with Rosenbach about the speciality's relationship to the overall global health.

“There are a number of places you can point to and say, ‘does this directly affect dermatologists?’ if it’s things around the globe,” said Rosenbach. “We see with COVID that we’re all citizens of the same planet, and this is the only planet.”

They highlighted the urgency of having this discussion, the role of the dermatologist in this larger conversation, and how patient care and experiences may be impacted by climate change.

Rosenbach talked about collective and individual mitigation strategies aimed at reducing humanity’s overall carbon footprint.

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