Making a Difference: Dr. Katherine Orlick enjoys getting to know her patients

Dr. Katherine Orlick

By Christina Fuoco-Karasinski

Dr. Katherine Orlick has her dream job. 

As a dermatologist/co-founder of Foothills Dermatology & Facial Plastic Surgery, Orlick enjoys getting to know her patients and being involved in their health care.

“Dermatology is such a great field,” she says. “You can truly make a difference in people’s lives.”

Her dual practice tackles dermatology and facial plastic surgery. A board-certified facial plastic surgeon and rhinoplasty specialist, Dr. Jerold Olson performs a full range of cosmetic and reconstructive procedures for the face, including facelift, eyelid surgery and nose reshaping. He will be leaving in the summer. 

“With our practice, we really focus on the patient first,” she adds. 

“We definitely focus on the patient’s well-being and the best care we can provide them. We’re not trying to sell a bunch of products or procedures. Some practices see a lot of patients in a day, but we don’t like to practice that way.”

For Orlick, she sees many skin cancer patients, especially those who are winter visitors. 

“I see them twice a year — October, when they arrive, and before they head home to their summer homes in the spring,” she says. 

“With skin cancer surgeries, sometimes we’ll even photograph the lesions and make sure we’re following them. We do, if necessary, refer out to the surgeons for excision, depending on if they need Mohs surgery.” 

Foothills Dermatology & Facial Plastic Surgery offers medical-grade skin care as well. It employs a full-time aesthetician who performs microdermabrasion, microneedling with and without PRP, and laser treatment for lesions. The practice recently added a microneedling machine with radiofrequency that treats texture, pigment changes, acne scars and fine wrinkles. 

The aesthetician also does Botox and fillers for cosmetic patients and PRP for hair loss. 

Orlick is a graduate of Duke University with a Bachelor of Science degree in biomedical engineering. 

She earned her medical degree from Wake Forest University School of Medicine, graduating with high honors. She then returned to Arizona to complete a pediatric residency at the University of Arizona. While a pediatric resident, she received several teaching awards. Orlick completed a second residency, dermatology, also from the University of Arizona. She earned board certification in both pediatrics and dermatology. She says that is uncommon because of the rigors of residencies. 

After she finished her medical training, she began practicing dermatology in Tucson. She was the assistant professor of dermatology in at the UA for about 18 months before joining a large dermatology group. 

In the fall 2007, she and Olson founded Foothills Dermatology & Facial Plastic Surgery. She is one of the few in Southern Arizona who specializes in pediatric dermatology. She treats adults, too. 

As a volunteer, she staffs an annual skin cancer screening clinic at the Arizona Desert Museum. 

She says dermatology and pediatrics are similar. 

“There’s a lot of education involved,” she says. “I teach my patients the importance of using sunscreen, for example. It’s also the type of field that is very visual. We have to do a biopsy sometimes to find out what’s going on with the skin. We can make a difference even though it’s an outpatient treatment. It’s not a field where patients are extremely sick. 

“Overall, we make a different in people’s lives. If they have full-body psoriasis, we can change their lives.”

Foothills Dermatology & Facial Plastic Surgery

7418 N. La Cholla Boulevard, Tucson