Pariser Dermatology Specialists Company Profile

08:02 EST 16th January 2019 | BioPortfolio

Pariser Dermatology Specialists began in 1946, when Dr. Harry Pariser moved to Norfolk from Philadelphia. He had grown up in Philadelphia, and had received all his education in the city. After completing his training in the relatively new medical specialty of dermatology he worked and taught in the Department of Dermatology at the University of Pennsylvania for 5 years. After which time, he enlisted and served in the Public Health Service.At this time, the specialty of dermatology was actually known as “dermatology and syphilology” because of the historical importance of syphilis. In the era before accurate laboratory diagnosis was available, interpretation of clinical signs, many of which involved the skin, were the only way to diagnose this important sexually transmitted disease. As a result dermatologists became the experts in syphilis, and by extension, in all sexually transmitted diseases. Norfolk was therefore an attractive city for two reasons: there was only one dermatologist and there was considerable need for control of sexually transmitted diseases.
After a rocky start Dr. Pariser’s downtown Norfolk practice became an established feature of the medical community. He treated patients mostly in his office, but consulted at most of the area's hospitals. When the Medical Tower opened in 1960, Dr. Pariser was among the original group of physicians and dentists who inaugurated this medical facility. The main office of Pariser Dermatology Specialists remains in this building.
A series of significant changes transformed the practice in the mid 1970’s. In 1974,a second office location was established in the Kempsville area. In 1976, Dr. Pariser’s older son, David, joined the practice and introduced an element of dermatologic surgery to it. Two years later his younger brother, Robert, joined the practice, bringing in skills of dermatopathology. In 1992, Dr. Pamela Phillips, a dermatologic surgeon, joined the practice. Her arrival introduced more sophisticated skin surgery and specialized skin cancer surgery to the practice. Dr. Phillips currently practices at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. As time passed, additional physicians joined the practice, and more office locations were opened. Drs. Robert Baer, Kenneth Hunter, Margery Scott, Linda Serwatka, and Lawrence Chang are associated with the practice.
More striking than the changes in locations and personnel are the changes in the practice of medicine in general and dermatology in particular during the span of the practice. When Dr. Harry Pariser started his practice he had to deal with the full range of disorders of the skin, hair, and nails and with the complex area of sexually transmitted diseases without benefit of antibiotics (except sulfa drugs) or cortisone-related medications. A variety of topical applications were available, with ingredients such as coal tar, salicylic acid, and ammoniated mercury. X-ray treatments were given for skin cancers and for chronic skin rashes. Mildly effective topical antifungal treatments were available; but more deeply-rooted fungal infections, such as scalp infections in children, were treated by X-ray therapy to induce transient loss of scalp hair. Patients with syphilis received medications containing heavy metals such as bismuth and arsenic. Skin diseases were diagnosed mostly by the skilled eye of the dermatologist. Biopsy diagnosis of skin lesions was in its infancy. There was no such thing as medical insuranc


601 Medical Tower
United States of America


Phone: (757) 622-6315
Fax: (757) 625-6940

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Pariser Dermatology Specialists began in 1946, when Dr. Harry Pariser moved to Norfolk from Philadelphia. He had grown up in Philadelphia, and had received all his education in the city. After complet...

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