Profile: Dr Warren Weightman

Dr Warren Weightman

“I am conscientious, dedicated, caring and want the best outcome for my patients.”

Bypassing his childhood desire to be a scientist, Dr Warren Weightman now serves on the Australian College of Dermatologists (ACD) Scientific Committee instead and has been a dermatologist for 30 years in both private practice and at public hospitals. He is currently Head of the Department of Dermatology at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Adelaide, South Australia.

“Being involved in College activities and meeting and becoming friends with dermatologists from around Australia and the world has been a great part of my career as a dermatologist. I enjoy the challenges in performing well at new and different workplaces and having the ability to diagnose quickly by looking at the patient’s skin without doing multiple tests. I am conscientious, dedicated, caring and want the best outcome for my patients,” says Dr Weightman.

Dr Weightman, specialises in psoriasis, biologic treatment, transplant dermatology and field treatments for actinic keratosis and superficial Basel Cell Carcinoma. He has also been involved in numerous clinical research trials.

“The most difficult part about being a dermatologist is managing patients whose conditions don’t have treatments that are effective. The affordability of some treatments and dealing with government restrictions are also challenges. I like diagnosing scabies as it an intensely irritating rash that when diagnosed is curable with treatment leading to great patient satisfaction,” says Dr Weightman.

When he is not working, you can find Dr Weightman at home with his wife and three boys, listening to rock music and eating chocolate. He also enjoys walking and tennis.

“If I could live in any other time, it would be 2100. I would like to see the technological advances at that time and whether all the current predictions have occurred,” says Dr Weightman.

Focus on psoriasis

Psoriasis is a lifelong skin condition characterised by the development of red scaly areas of skin. It can develop at any age, but the condition usually starts in young adults in their early 30s, with 75% of affected people developing psoriasis before the age of 45 years. There is currently no cure for psoriasis. The aim of treatment is to clear the lesions and control symptoms.

“Treatments for psoriasis include topical, narrowband UVB (NBUVB), methotrexate, acitretin, cyclosporine, biologic treatments and apremilast. In my experience, the biologic treatments work best. The use of biologics in psoriasis has changed the way we manage these patients and has been the main breakthrough that has improved patient care,” says Dr Weightman.

“I am confident now that I can treat a patient with moderate to severe psoriasis and bring them under good control with a combination of standard treatments and/or biologic therapies. It is however sometimes difficult to clear some patients whose psoriasis is not severe enough to qualify for a biologic. More biologics are always worthwhile but treatments for the moderately severe psoriasis patients are needed. Apremilast and Jak-kinase inhibitors may fill this gap,” says Dr Weightman.

Fast facts

Doctor-patient relationship style: Caring
Special interests: Psoriasis, field treatments for actinic damage
Dream holiday destination: Antarctica
Favourite movie: Raiders of the Lost Ark.