Psoriasis: Types, Symptoms, Treatment

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What is psoriasis?

Psoriasis is a dermatological disorder characterized by an anomalous proliferation of skin cells. Cell regeneration typically takes place concurrently with the elimination of expired skin cells, maintaining a harmonious equilibrium. When skin cells undergo abnormal growth, they ascend to the surface of the skin and subsequently perish, resulting in the formation of a red plaque covered by white scales.

Typically manifesting on the knees, elbows, and occasionally the scalp, psoriasis arises due to various factors influencing the abnormal behavior of skin cells. The primary factor often associated with this condition is the compromised functioning of the immune system.

Psoriasis is marked by an accelerated growth rate of skin cells, approximately ten times faster than the usual pace. As a result, the buildup of dead skin cells on the skin’s surface leads to the formation of raised, red plaques covered with white scales. Predominantly affecting the elbows, knees, and scalp, these symptoms are characteristic of the condition.

Psoriasis can manifest on various parts of the body, including the palms, trunk, and soles of the feet.

Psoriasis can sometimes be found associated with psoriatic arthritis, which causes inflammation and pain in the joints. In India, it is estimated that a notable percentage, ranging from 10 to 30, of individuals diagnosed with psoriasis also experience the co-occurrence of psoriatic arthritis. If you or anyone of your relatives are suffering from this you can buy soap for Psoriasis from online stores.

What are the Different Types of Psoriasis?

Psoriasis can stem from various factors, including trauma, emotional stress, and streptococcal infection. Recent research on this condition has identified immune system dysregulation as a crucial trigger. Psoriasis manifests in five distinct types, each exhibiting unique characteristics.

Plaque psoriasis: This is a type of psoriasis that gives red, raised patches on the skin.

Guttate psoriasis: This causes small red spots on the skin. This occurs subsequent to the patient’s illness onset.

Inverse psoriasis: This type of psoriasis usually occurs in skin folds.

Pustular psoriasis: This type of psoriasis causes pus-filled areas on the palms and soles. These are painful and itchy at the same timePsoriasis can induce flu-like symptoms such as fever, dizziness, loss of appetite, and other associated manifestations.

Erythrodermic psoriasis: This resembles a severe sunburn because it makes the skin bright red. This type of psoriasis causes rapid heart rate, itching, and pain. It is crucial to emphasize that this condition is considered an emergency and necessitates immediate medical consultation.

What are the symptoms of psoriasis?

Psoriasis is characterized by the presence of swollen and red patches of skin, often accompanied by the formation of silvery, loose scales. These affected areas can be painful, and itchy, and may occasionally crack and bleed.

Fingernails and toenails may discolor and change color.

Patients with psoriasis may develop scales and patches or crusts on their scalps.

Can psoriasis be spread by touch?

Psoriasis is an autoimmune condition that is mainly acquired due to some reason related to genetics or environmental factors. It is characterized by: Dry scaly patches on the skin but is not contagious.

It cannot be spread by touching an affected person. It can spread to other parts of the body of a person suffering from an inflammatory skin condition.

Which is the best treatment for psoriasis?

While a definitive cure for psoriasis does not currently exist, effective treatment options are available to manage and alleviate its symptoms. Some of the important methods of treatment are listed below:

Application of topical steroids: These are available in the form of ointment, cream, gel, lotion, shampoo, and spray. Under the guidance of a dermatologist, it is advisable to utilize these treatments. Corticosteroids play a crucial role in effectively managing symptoms and averting the occurrence of exacerbations.

Phototherapy: As an initial treatment for moderate or severe psoriasis, light therapy is commonly employed. Exposing the affected area, characterized by redness and itchiness, to specific wavelengths of light, it can lead to the reduction or complete disappearance of the patches.

Application of some other topical treatments: These include topical application of vitamin D analogs, salicylic acid, retinoids, calcineurin inhibitors, anthralin, and coal tar.

Steroid shots: Steroid shots are given directly into the inflamed patch of skin. In cases where persistently inflamed skin patches are present, the preferred approach involves utilizing suppressants. This may involve the administration of immunosuppressants such as cyclosporine to help alleviate symptoms and manage the condition effectively.

Summary: Psoriasis cannot be cured but treatments are possible enough to manage the symptoms. Important treatment methods include the use of topical steroids, light therapy, immunosuppressants, etc.

Who Will Need Treatment for Psoriasis?

People who have been diagnosed with psoriasis may be eligible for the treatment. It is always better to treat the symptoms of psoriasis with simple means like topical creams and UV light therapy and then move on to advanced means.

The aim of the treatment is to stop the skin cells from growing too fast and to reduce inflammation. They also aim to reduce the scales to the maximum permissible limit.

Who is not eligible for the treatment for psoriasis?

A topical cream can be with every person. However, for advanced medications and procedures consult your doctor about the type of therapy you would prefer. Also, discuss your allergy symptoms with your doctor and get the medicines and drugs that are best suited for you.

What are the side effects of psoriasis treatment?

This may depend on your skin type and any other medical conditions you may have. Topical creams to soothe your skin are mild and don’t have any side effects. However, if you are going for advanced procedures, there are chances that you may have some allergic reactions.

However, most treatments for psoriasis are considered safe and have been proven over the years. If you have concerns, you can check with your doctor.