What Does it Mean to be a Dermatology-Certified Nurse Practitioner?

In dermatology, healthcare professionals with specialized training and expertise play a crucial role in diagnosing and treating various skin conditions. Dermatology-certified nurse practitioners (DCNPs) stand out as an essential part of the healthcare team. Combining a nurse practitioner’s skills with extensive dermatology training, DCNPs offer a unique perspective to patients seeking dermatological care.

Let’s explore the role of a dermatology-certified nurse practitioner and highlight the significance of their contributions to the field of dermatology.

Understanding the Role of a Dermatology-Certified Nurse Practitioner

A dermatology-certified nurse practitioner is a registered nurse who has completed advanced education and clinical training in dermatology.

To become a dermatology-certified nurse practitioner, they must obtain a Masters or Doctoral degree in the Science of Nursing and be licensed within his/her state as an advanced practice nurse. They must also be board-certified by the AANP or ANCC and specialize in the practice of dermatology.

At your appointment, they will first take a comprehensive medical history, discuss what medications you’re on, and use the information they gather to diagnose your skin condition. DCNPs have the knowledge and skills to diagnose, treat, and manage various skin conditions, ranging from common skin problems like acne and eczema to more complex issues like skin cancer.

They also collaborate with dermatopathologists, oncologists, rheumatologists, primary care providers, and other health care professionals as needed to ensure continuity of care.

The Role of DCNPs in Biltmore Dermatology

At Biltmore Dermatology, the significance of having a dermatology-certified nurse practitioner on the team cannot be overstated. As exemplified by Ryan Patterson, our practice owner, a DCNP brings patients a unique blend of dermatological expertise and nursing compassion. They are equipped to perform comprehensive skin examinations, diagnose various skin conditions, develop treatment plans, and prescribe medications.

Additionally, they are skilled in performing procedures like biopsies, cryotherapy, aesthetic treatments, and surgical interventions to address skin concerns.

What Sets Dermatology-Certified Nurse Practitioners Apart

The role of a dermatology-certified nurse practitioner extends beyond just clinical tasks. DCNPs often take on the role of educators, empowering patients with knowledge about their skin health and preventive measures to avoid common skin problems. They also emphasize the importance of skin protection from harmful UV rays to reduce the risk of skin cancer and premature aging.

Another crucial aspect of the DCNPs’ role is providing personalized care. They take the time to understand patients’ concerns, medical history, and lifestyle to tailor treatment plans that best suit their needs. This patient-centered approach fosters trust and strengthens the patient-provider relationship.

Schedule a Consultation

If you are experiencing skin-related issues or want to ensure your skin health, consider scheduling a consultation with our Dermatology-Certified Nurse Practitioner Ryan Patterson. At Biltmore Dermatology, you will receive personalized care and comprehensive dermatological services to address your concerns effectively. 

To schedule a consultation today, call our Terre Haute, IN office at 812.247.6327 or use our online contact form.


Ryan is State Licensed and Nationally Board Certified as a Family Nurse Practitioner (NP-C) by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners. Additionally, he is board certified as a Dermatology Certified Nurse Practitioner (DCNP) by the Dermatology Nursing Certification Board. He has 20+ years of Dermatology Experience.

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