What Else Should I Know
Making healthy choices can help with psoriasis. Here are some things you can do:
- If you smoke, quit. Smoking can trigger outbreaks of psoriasis in some people.
- Avoid alcohol. It can make psoriasis treatments less effective.
- Eat healthy foods. Eating a lot of fruits and vegetables can help fend off diseases that might trigger psoriasis.
- Stay at a healthy weight. This decreases the risk of inverse psoriasis.
- Keep skin clean and well moisturized. Bathing daily with bath salts or oils and then applying moisturizer can help ease the symptoms of psoriasis.
People who have psoriasis may feel self-conscious about how it looks. That’s one reason why some people turn to a therapist or join a support group of people who understand what they might be going through.
The key to psoriasis treatment is keeping up on whatever your doctor prescribes. If that means applying an ointment twice a day, then find a way to remind yourself to do it so you don’t forget. Psoriasis is one of those things that you need to stay focused on treating, even when you’re feeling OK.
Whether your psoriasis is mild or severe, learn all you can about it. Talk to your doctor or check websites like:
How Is Psoriasis Diagnosed And Treated
Psoriasis often has a typical appearance that a primary care doctor can recognize, but it can be confused with other skin diseases , so a dermatologist is often the best doctor to diagnose it. The treatment of psoriasis usually depends on how much skin is affected, how bad the disease is , or the location . Treatments range from creams and ointments applied to the affected areas to ultraviolet light therapy to drugs . Many people who have psoriasis also have serious health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and depression. Some people with psoriasis also have an inflammatory condition which affects their joints, called psoriatic arthritis.
Psoriatic arthritis has many of the same symptoms as other types of arthritis, so a rheumatologist is often the best doctor to diagnose it. The treatment of psoriatic arthritis usually involves the use of drugs .
Psoriatic disease may be treated with drugs or a combination of drugs and creams or ointments.
What Are The Types Of Psoriasis
Common types of psoriasis include:
Plaque psoriasis. This is the most common type of psoriasis. It causes plaques and silvery scales, usually on the knees, elbows, lower back, and scalp. They can be itchy and painful and may crack and bleed.
Guttate psoriasis. This type often shows up after an illness, especially strep throat. It causes small red spots, usually on the trunk, arms, and legs. Spots also can appear on the face, scalp, and ears.
Inverse psoriasis. This causes smooth, raw-looking patches of red skin that feel sore. The patches are in places where skin touches skin, such as the armpits, buttocks, upper eyelids, groin and genitals, or under a girl’s breasts.
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Signs And Symptoms Of Psoriasis
Psoriasis plaques can range from a few spots of dandruff-like scaling to major eruptions that cover large areas. The diseases symptoms and appearance vary according to the type and severity of psoriasis.
Some common signs and symptoms include:
- Discolored patches or raised plaques of skin that are covered with scales
- Burning, itching, or soreness near the affected areas
- Pitted or thickened fingernails or toenails
What Are Psoriasis Flare
One feature of psoriasis is that its recurring, often seasonally. Other times, the appearance or reappearance of your psoriasis symptoms can be unpredictable, with patterns or triggers changing over time. When your symptoms suddenly reappear or worsen, these are called flare-ups.
You may not have to suffer every time one occurs. Working with your doctor can help you make lifestyle choices to better manage flare-ups.
Ready to talk to your dermatologist? Learn about your options: Psoriasis Treatments
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What Is Cdc Doing About Psoriasis
In 2010, CDC worked with experts in psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis, and public health to develop a public health perspective that considers how these conditions affect the entire population. The resulting report is Developing and Addressing the Public Health Agenda for Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis pdf icon. You can read a short article about the agendaexternal icon in The American Journal of Preventive Medicine.
CDCs National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey , an intermittent source of national psoriasis data, has included questions about psoriasis as late as the 2013-2014 cycle. A recent analysis of NHANES data estimates that 7.4 million adults had psoriasis in 2013external icon.
- Psoriasis causes patches of thick red skin and silvery scales. Patches are typically found on the elbows, knees, scalp, lower back, face, palms, and soles of feet, but can affect other places . The most common type of psoriasis is called plaque psoriasis.
- Psoriatic arthritis is an inflammatory type of arthritis that eventually occurs in 10% to 20% of people with psoriasis. It is different from more common types of arthritis and is thought to be related to the underlying problem of psoriasis.
- Psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis are sometimes considered together as psoriatic disease.
Who is at risk for psoriasis?
Anyone can get psoriasis. It occurs mostly in adults, but children can also get it. Men and women seem to have equal risk.
Can I get psoriasis from someone who has it?
How Is Psoriasis Diagnosed
Doctors usually diagnose psoriasis by examining the skin, scalp, and nails. They’ll also ask whether someone else in your family has psoriasis and if you recently had an illness or started taking a new medicine.
Rarely, doctors might take a skin sample to check more closely. A can tell the doctor whether it’s psoriasis or another condition with similar symptoms.
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Research And Statistics: Who Has Psoriasis
According to the National Psoriasis Foundation, about 7.5 million people in the United States have psoriasis. Most are white, but the skin disease also affects Black, Latino, and Asian Americans as well as Native Americans and Pacific Islanders.
The disease occurs about equally among men and women. According to the National Institutes of Health , it is more common in adults, and you are at a greater risk if someone in your family has it. A study published in September 2016 in the journal PLoS One concluded that interactions between particular genes as well as genetic and environmental factors play an important role in the diseases development.
People with psoriasis generally see their first symptoms between ages 15 and 30, although developing the disease between 50 and 60 years of age is also common.
The biggest factor for determining prognosis is the amount of disease someone has, says Michael P. Heffernan, MD, a dermatologist at the San Luis Dermatology and Laser Clinic in San Luis Obispo, California.
What’s The Difference Between Psoriasis And Plaque Psoriasis
Psoriasis is a chronic immune disease that usually causes a skin rash, and can also affect the nails. Plaque psoriasis is a type of skin psoriasis characterized by reddish, elevated, solid skin patches that are covered by flaky scales. It is the most common type of psoriasis. Up to 80% of people who have psoriasis have the plaque psoriasis variety.
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What Is Stelara
STELARA® is a prescription medicine used to treat adults 18 years and older with moderately to severely active Crohns disease.
STELARA® is a prescription medicine used to treat adults 18 years and older with moderately to severely active ulcerative colitis.
STELARA® is a prescription medicine used to treat adults and children 6 years and older with moderate to severe psoriasis who may benefit from taking injections or pills or phototherapy .
STELARA® is a prescription medicine used to treat adults 18 years and older with active psoriatic arthritis. STELARA® can be used alone or with the medicine methotrexate.
What You Can Do
Most people who get plaque psoriasis have it for the rest of their lives. You can do a few things to deal with it better:
Avoid triggers. Things like stress and smoking don’t cause psoriasis. But they can make it worse. Try to figure out what triggers your flare-ups. You may be affected by:
American Academy of Dermatology: “Psoriasis.”
Medscape: “FDA OKs Biologic Guselkumab for Plaque Psoriasis.” “Plaque Psoriasis.”
National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases: “Psoriasis.”
National Psoriasis Foundation.
UpToDate: “Treatment of psoriasis.”
Weigle, N., American Family Physician, May 2013.
Bruce E. Strober, MD, PhD. associate director of Dermatopharmacology, Department of Dermatology, New York University School of Medicine co-director of the Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis Center consultant for Amgen, Biogen, Genentech, Fujisawa, and 3-M.
Jeffrey M. Weinberg, MD, director of the Clinical Research Center, St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital Center, New York City assistant clinical professor of dermatology, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons consultant for Amgen and Genentech.
Abel, E. “Dermatology III: Psoriasis,” ACP Medicine, April, 2005.
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Articles On Types Of Psoriasis
Knowing which kind of psoriasis you have helps you and your doctor make a treatment plan. Most people have only one type at a time. Sometimes, after your symptoms go away, a new form of psoriasis will crop up in response to a trigger.
In general, most types of psoriasis result from the same triggers:
Here’s how you can spot the 7 types of psoriasis and what you can do to treat them.
What Is The Medical Treatment For Plaque Psoriasis
It must be remembered that psoriasis is a chronic health condition that is not curable in the usual sense. The disease is characterized by exacerbations and remissions that often seem to occur spontaneously. Patients often relate some incidental environmental event or psychological stress to changes in their disease’s activity. This can complicate treatment.
Since psoriasis is incurable, doctors treat the condition to enhance the patient’s sense of well-being and independence. Treatment options are chosen that are appropriate to the severity of the condition. Mild, localized psoriasis is treated with topical therapy while more extensive, severe disease will require systemic, expensive, and potentially hazardous treatment.
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Symptoms Of Guttate Psoriasis
Guttate is a temporary type of psoriasis that often clears up on its own in a few weeks, although its possible to have it chronically.
It causes scaly, tiny, flesh-colored bumps that cover your chest, legs, and arms. The bumps can also sometimes spread to your legs, face, scalp, and ears.
This type of psoriasis is often seen in children and young adults whove recently had strep throat or another infection, according to
How Many People Have Psoriasis
Psoriasis is a fairly common skin condition and is estimated to affect approximately 1%-3% of the U.S. population. It currently affects roughly 7.5 million to 8.5 million people in the U.S. It is seen worldwide in about 125 million people. Interestingly, African Americans have about half the rate of psoriasis as Caucasians.
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Plaque Psoriasis And The Geography Of The Body
The distribution of psoriasis patches on the body can appear randomly. Some patches may cover large portions of the body, while others may be no larger than a dime.
Once a person has developed psoriasis, it may appear in a number of different forms in many different places. Unlike inverse psoriasis, plaque psoriasis doesnt usually affect the genitals and armpits.
Plaque Psoriasis And Its Reach: The Scalp And Beyond
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, at least 50 percent of people with plaque psoriasis will experience a bout of scalp psoriasis. Plaque psoriasis on the scalp may require different treatment than plaque psoriasis on other parts of the body.
Medicated ointments, shampoos, and careful removal of scales can help treat scalp psoriasis. Sometimes, systemic medications must be used to clear plaque psoriasis on the scalp.
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When To See A Doctor
Anyone who notices unusual changes in their skin should see a doctor.
Individuals with a diagnosis of psoriasis should follow their treatment plan and see their doctor if symptoms persist or worsen, or if treatment results in adverse effects.
There is currently no cure for plaque psoriasis, but many treatment options are available, depending on the individual and the severity of symptoms.
- reduce dryness and cracking
- improve itching
Various topical treatments are available from a pharmacist or for purchase online, with or without a prescription.
It is best to check first with a doctor or pharmacist before choosing a topical treatment, as some may suit an individual better than others. In certain cases, there may not be enough scientific evidence to confirm that they are safe to use or work.
What Causes Psoriasis Outbreaks
Psoriasis outbreaks differ from person to person. No one knows exactly what causes flare-ups. Common psoriasis triggers may include:
- Skin injury .
- Streptococcal or other infection that affects the immune system.
- Certain prescription medications .
- Cold weather, when people have less exposure to sunlight and humidity and more to hot, dry indoor air.
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Diagnosing Plaque Psoriasis By Looking At The Skin
Most doctors and nurses can tell if a scaly or rough patch of skin is psoriasis. Sometimes a biopsy or a visit with a dermatologist is needed. During your visit, make sure to point out all of your abnormal patches of skin.
Tell your doctor about your symptoms and what seems to aggravate your skin. Possible triggers of psoriasis include:
- skin trauma
Is It Scalp Psoriasis Or Dandruff
More than half of all psoriasis patients have scalp psoriasis, according to the NPF. Itchy plaques can extend beyond the hairline onto the forehead, neck, and around the ears.
“Most people with scalp psoriasis have it on other parts of their body as well,” says Dina D. Strachan, MD, a dermatologist and assistant clinical professor of dermatology at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City.
Scalp psoriasis is sometimes confused with seborrheic dermatitis, or dandruff. According to Dr. Strachan, dandruff which causes a flaky, itchy scalp without signs of inflammation tends to itch more than scalp psoriasis. It has a greasy-appearing yellow scale, Strachan says. In contrast, psoriasis whether it’s on your scalp or any other body part tends to have a thick, silvery scale.”
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What Is Chronicplaque Psoriasis
Chronic plaque psoriasis is the most common presentation of psoriasis. It presents as small to large, well-demarcated, red, scaly and thickened areas of skin. It most likely to affect elbows, knees, and lower back but may arise on any part of the body.
It tends to be a relatively persistent or chronic pattern of psoriasis that can be improved with treatment but is difficult to clear completely with topical treatments alone. It is characterised by large flat areas of psoriasis with a typical silvery scale. These plaques may join together to involve very extensive areas of the skin, particularly on the trunk and limbs. It is often accompanied by scalp and nail psoriasis.
What Else Should I Ask My Healthcare Provider
If you have psoriasis, ask your healthcare provider:
- How can I prevent outbreaks and control symptoms?
- What medication will work best for me?
- What else should I do to improve symptoms?
- What are my options if creams dont work?
- Will psoriasis ever go away?
A note from Cleveland Clinic
Psoriasis, an itchy skin condition, can come and go throughout your life. Its related to an overactive immune response and is not contagious. If you have skin changes that arent going away, talk to your healthcare provider. There is no cure for psoriasis, but psoriasis treatments can improve symptoms. Your provider may prescribe a special cream or moisturizer or medications. Other therapies are available if creams or medicines dont work. Maintaining your overall health will also help improve symptoms.
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 10/17/2020.
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What Are Other Types Of Psoriasis
Plaque psoriasis is the most common type. About 80% to 90% of people with psoriasis have plaque psoriasis.
Other, less common types of psoriasis include:
- Inverse psoriasis appears in skin folds. It may look like thin pink plaques without scale.
- Guttate psoriasis may appear after a sore throat caused by a streptococcal infection. It looks like small, red, drop-shaped scaly spots in children and young adults.
- Pustular psoriasis has small, pus-filled bumps on top of the red patches or plaques.
- Sebopsoriasis typically appears on the face and scalp as red bumps and plaques with greasy yellow scale. This type is a cross between psoriasis and seborrheic dermatitis.
Are Psoriasis Shampoos Available
Coal tar shampoos are very useful in controlling psoriasis of the scalp. Using the shampoo daily can be very beneficial adjunctive therapy. There are a variety of over-the-counter shampoos available without a prescription. There is no evidence that one shampoo is superior to another. Generally, the selection of a tar shampoo is simply a matter of personal preference.
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What Is Psoriasis Symptoms Causes Diagnosis Treatment And Prevention
Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease that causes plaques, which are itchy or sore patches of thick, dry, discolored skin.
While any part of your body can be affected, psoriasis plaques most often develop on the elbows, knees, scalp, back, face, palms, and feet.
Like other autoinflammatory diseases, psoriasis occurs when your immune system which normally attacks infectious germs begins to attack healthy cells instead.
What Type Of Psoriasis Treatment Will I Need
Several treatment options can relieve psoriasis. Creams or ointments may be enough to improve the rash in small areas of skin. If the rash affects larger areas, or you also have joint pain, you may need other treatments. Joint pain may be a sign that you have arthritis.
Your provider will decide on a treatment plan based on:
- Severity of the rash.
- Vitamin A or retinoid creams.
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