This Thanksgiving season, we are so thankful to be welcoming Dr. Miesha Merati, D.O to our Skinstyle family!
Dr. Merati is a board-certified dermatologist and fellowship-trained dermoscopy expert, skilled in the early detection of melanoma and nonmelanoma skin cancers. Get to know Dr. Merati below!
Q: What led you to pursue a career in medicine?
A: I went to the Body Worlds exhibit in Chicago and was just amazed by how delicate yet functional the human body was. I was fascinated by how molecular structures invisible to the human eye can work together to create a living, breathing, complex being. I honestly never truly imagined myself doing anything else. My mom also played a huge role in my consideration for medicine.
Q: How did your mom impact your decision to pursue medicine?
A: My mom’s dream was to become a doctor, but taking care of my sister and I while my dad was working was a full-time job. Instead, she earned an MBA and decided that she would apply to medical school later. She ended up matriculating into medical school while my sister and I were in middle school, so we had the opportunity to experience the process with her and to see the impact that she had on people’s lives first-hand.
Q: How did you decide to go into dermatology?
A: I chose dermatology because it marries my passion for medicine with creativity. Dermatology not only allows me to be creative with my hands, but to also see tangible improvements in someone’s skin and health. You’re not only helping someone’s skin but also the addressing psychological aspect of their condition being displayed to the world.
And contrary to what the media portrays, dermatology is not all about botox and fillers — there are thousands of skin diseases and the way in which they manifest on the skin can vary quite a bit. This allows me to play investigator and ‘think outside the box’ on a daily basis. There really is no one recipe to helping someone and dermatology allows me to be creative in not only working with my hands but also in my medical treatment plans.
Q: What aspects of your training did you find particularly rewarding?
A: I was fortunate to spend a year completing a dermoscopy fellowship with Dr. Harold Rabinovitz before matriculating into dermatology residency. The dermatoscope is a hand-held microscope which magnifies lesions ten-fold. Knowing the structures and how they can clue you into a malignancy can help you immensely. Catching a malignancy early can truly benefit someone’s prognosis, especially for melanoma. (Check out Dr. Merati’s dermatoscope’s instagram page here!)
Q: Is there anyone else in your life who had an impact on your career?
A: My dad is a mechanical and aeronautical engineer and he works with lasers — in fact, he uses many of the same devices we use in dermatology. Seeing his research and his excitement with his discoveries instilled an inherent desire to work with these devices and pursue research. I have been actively involved in research since high school because I understand the impact it can have on the world and healthcare in general.
Q: What is the best part of your job?
A: Making long-term connections with patients not only allows me to give back to the community, but to also learn from people and their experiences. I consider the doctor-patient relationship to be extremely special. I truly enjoy working with my hands and physically seeing improvement in someone’s skin and internal health.
Additionally, I’ve mentored high school students, medical students, and residents. I remember the impact that my mentors had on me, and I find giving back to the community very rewarding.
Dermatology is also intellectually stimulating. There’s always something new and exciting in the medical literature or the cosmetic dermatology world. I think I can speak for many dermatologists when I say that the field keeps us on our toes!
Q: What do you like to do outside of work?
A: During the stay-at-home orders, I had ample opportunity to revisit my passion for painting and sketching. I learned DSLR photography as well. I love cooking, and dining (who doesn’t love dining?!), especially at Persian restaurants. I’m also a fan of hiking, and being active in general. Last but not least, I enjoy spending time with family, and playing with my two cats and family pup!
Q: What drew you to SoCal?
A: The dreamy views and the weather!
Q: What are you doing to stay busy during quarantine?
A: The cats loved it that I was home! It was nice having more time to learn photography, sketch, paint, and spend more time outdoors. It was a forced staycation! I consider it a once-in-a- lifetime opportunity to pursue and improve my hobbies.
Q: What is something you wish your patients knew about you?
A: I love animals! When I was in Cleveland, I would frequent the animal shelter.
Q: What are you looking forward to after the pandemic has subsided?
A: Traveling and comfortably spending time outside the house.
Schedule an appointment at www.skinstyledermatology.com with Dr. Merati and our amazing dermatology team in West Los Angeles! Also check out her general and cosmetic dermatology instagram page @drmieshamerati!