Q&A with Mital Patel, MD

Lisa B. Samalonis, Managing Editor

Dr Patel is director, Hidradenitis Suppurativa and Neutrophilic Dermatoses Clinic; assistant program director, Dermatology and Rheumatology Fellowship; instructor in Dermatology, Harvard Medical School; associate physician, Department of Dermatology, Brigham and Women’s Hospital in
Boston, Massachusetts.

She has completed a dermatology-rheumatology fellowship and is an expert in connective tissue diseases and complex medical dermatology. Her research interest is in neutrophilic based skin conditions. She is the founder and director of a Hidradenitis Suppurativa and Neutrophilic Dermatoses clinic, which cares for patients from all over the country. She also works in a multi-disciplinary clinic with rheumatology to manage patients with complex psoriasis as well as with gastroenterologists to manage cutaneous manifestations of inflammatory bowel disease. 

Dr Patel shares her thoughts on the future of immune-mediated inflammatory diseases (IMIDs) and her participation as a co-chair with the 2018 Interdisciplinary Autoimmune Summit (IAS) meeting, with The Dermatologist.


Q. Why is it beneficial for dermatologists to attend the IAS?
A: The IAS is a unique meeting because it gathers dermatologists, rheumatologists, gastroenterologists and immunologists together to improve our understanding of many immune-mediated inflammatory disorders. It provides an opportunity for dermatologists to collaborate, discuss and learn from colleagues from other specialties which we so rarely get to do at meetings.
 Q. Why are you involved with the IAS meeting?
 A: As a dermatologist who focuses on complex medical dermatology this is one of my favorite conferences. I currently work in a multi-disciplinary clinic with 2 rheumatologists and I have started one of the first multi-disciplinary clinics combining dermatologists and gastroenterologists. These opportunities have allowed me to better understand the complexity of many dermatologic conditions such as psoriasis, pyoderma gangrenosum, hidradenitis suppurativa, cutaneous Crohn’s, vasculitis, etc. 

This meeting fosters the idea of multi-disciplinary care, which I feel is essential in the management of these systemic conditions effecting multiple organ systems. The meeting allows various specialists to come together in one room to collaborate, discuss, and debate diagnosis, management, and emerging ideas for some of our most challenging inflammatory conditions. It allows us to use each other’s research and understanding of disease to improve our care for many of our very complex patients. This is a rare opportunity in medicine and one I hope every medical dermatologist can experience.
Q. Are there any messages about immune-mediated inflammatory diseases that you would like to share with the readers?
A. The more we learn about immune-mediated inflammatory diseases the more evident it becomes there are common pathways playing a role in the pathogenesis in many of these conditions. Our growing understanding of the pathways affected in these diseases is allowing us to create more targeted therapies which are more efficacious.

Join Dr. Patel and The Dermatologist at The 2018 Interdisciplinary Autoimmune Summit (IAS), which will be held at the Westin Waterfront in Boston, MA from April 27 through April 29. Dr Patel will speak on Updates in Neutrophilic Dermatoses (Friday, April 27 • 1:25 PM - 2:05 PM); and Overlap of Pyoderma Gangrenosum (Saturday, April 28 • 2:05 PM - 2:45 PM). She will also be included in the panel Co-Chairs Complex Clinical Case Review (Saturday, April 28 • 4:40 PM - 5:20 PM).