What is your background and what inspired you to become a doctor?
I took a meandering path to medicine. As an undergraduate, I was drawn to psychology and planned on pursuing a career in neuropsychology. (I was completely enthralled with personality research at the time). I deviated a bit and enrolled in medical school rather than graduate school, but still with the thought of pursuing psychiatry. That all changed when I observed my first surgery on the eye. I was blown away by how delicate and precise the maneuvers were. It was the first time I had ever encountered a discipline that I wanted to master completely. My path was forever changed for the better and I am in love with my career!
What is the philosophy behind epi.logic?
Epi.Logic was born out of my desire to simplify effective skincare for my patients. As part of every consultation, I discuss my patients’ skin goals in an effort to maximize their overall results. I soon realized that offering a skincare line replete with the necessary essentials to nourish and treat the skin would allow me to better serve my patients. The line was developed around the ingredients that I feel are critical to good skin health. It serves not only those who are veterans to aesthetic procedures and are looking to round out their cosmetic regimens, but also those who are new to clinical skincare and are looking to reap the benefits of active ingredient-driven routine.
When did you become aware of sun safety as a vital component of health?
Sun safety was discussed as a concern in medical school but it wasn’t until I was in practice that I came to understand its real significance. As an oculofacial plastic surgeon, I care for patients afflicted by skin cancers around the eyes and assist them with removal of tumors and reconstruction of their eyelids. I have encountered the full gamut of clinical presentations, from small tumors that require just minor intervention to life- and sight-threatening tumors. Unfortunately, I can recount too many individuals who’ve suffered through difficult diagnoses and treatments which may have been prevented with adequate sun protection.
What surprises you in your practice about patients’ thoughts and behaviors regarding sun safety?
I am always surprised at how frequently I encounter patients that take pride in their attention to their health and dedication to self-care yet consider sun protection a superfluous step. I have patients that are willing to invest considerable amounts of money for cosmetic procedures yet are reluctant to purchase a bottle of sunscreen. There is still so much work needed to educate the public on sunscreen’s many benefits.
What advice would you give about sun protection for the eyes?
I do recommend application of sunscreen around the eyes. Mineral sunscreens are typically better tolerated than chemical sunscreens for this area. For my patients that wear cosmetics, I do mention that there are eyeshadows available with SPF. (These are made by Supergoop). While these should not be considered replacements for traditional sunscreen, they are a nice addition for those who enjoy a pop of color on the lids. Lastly, sunglasses with UVA and UVB protection add an extra layer of protection.
Tell us more about the work you do in the Dominican Republic…why is this important to you?
My volunteer work in the Dominican Republic is the highlight of my year. I travel with a group of eye surgeons, anesthesiologists, nurses, technicians and volunteers from all over the US. It’s such a special group of people. The organization that runs the program, Institute for Latin American Concern (ILAC), is exceptional; they have trained a group of local healthcare assistants to comb rural, medically-underserved areas for individuals in need of our services. The patients are informed of our team’s arrival dates and come to our facility for an evaluation. I get to experience the purest expression of what the doctor-patient relationship should be: I get to meet the patient, explain what I can offer and if they are interested in proceeding with surgery, I can offer them care without the interference of insurance companies or other bureaucratic obstacles.
Year after year, the most common conditions I treat are children requiring droopy eyelid repair because they were born with lids that interfere with their development of vision and adults who have suffered traumatic injuries requiring reconstructive procedures in order to comfortably wear an ocular prosthetic and face society confidently. Since I have been volunteering for several years, I have gotten to follow-up with the children and adults I’ve treated over the years and getting to witness the joy you give keeps me going back!
For more on Dr. Jeanniton, go here