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Nov 22, 2022

Skin Health

Autoimmune Disease

Skin conditionPsoriasis


Psoriasis affects more than 8 million Americans, but what is it?

What is Psoriasis?

Psoriasis is a chronic (long-term), autoimmune skin disease that typically affects the knees, elbows, trunk, and scalp. This skin condition tends to lead to a rash with itchy, scaly spots.

What are the signs and symptoms of psoriasis?

Individuals with psoriasis frequently undergo cycles where it flares up for a few weeks or months before subsiding.

  • Skin that itches and hurts and can break or bleed
  • Minor bleeding sites where the affected skin has been scraped
  • Rashes and/or red, inflammatory skin patches that are frequently covered with loose, silver- colored scales
  • Swollen and/or stiff joints
  • Your fingernails and toenails may have complications, such as discoloration and chipping; they could even start to fall out or separate from your nail bed.
  • Your scalp may be covered in scaly plaques

What are the different types of psoriasis?

Plaque psoriasis
Plaque psoriasis

Most common type.
Dry, itchy, raised skin patches (plaques) covered with scales

Guttate psoriasis
Guttate psoriasis

Triggered by a bacterial infection such as strep throat.
Small, drop-shaped, scaling spots on the torso, arms or legs

Inverse psoriasis
Inverse psoriasis

Caused by fungi.
Mainly affects the skin folds of the groin, buttocks and breasts

Pustular psoriasis
Pustular psoriasis

A rare type.
Clearly defined pus-filled blisters

Psoriatic erythroderma
Psoriatic erythroderma

The least common type.
Can cover the entire body with a peeling rash. Short-lived (acute) or long-term (chronic).

Plaque psoriasis

This is the most prevalent type of psoriasis, resulting in scale-covered, dry, elevated skin patches (plaques), that could be few or numerous. They typically show up on the scalp, lower back, elbows, and knees. Depending on your skin tone, the patches have different colors.

Guttate psoriasis

Young individuals and children are most commonly affected by this form of psoriasis. Usually, a bacterial infection, like strep throat, is what sets this type of psoriasis off. Small, drop-shaped scaling lesions on the torso, arms, or legs are its telltale sign.

Inverse psoriasis

Your groin, buttocks, and breast skin folds are mostly impacted by this form of psoriasis. It results in scaly, inflammatory skin patches that get worse with friction and perspiration. This form of psoriasis may be brought on by fungi.

Pustular psoriasis

This form of psoriasis results in distinct pus-filled blisters. On your palms or soles, it may appear in little patches or larger ones.

Psoriatic erythroderma

A rare skin ailment that results in a red rash covering the majority of your body. least common type of psoriasis, erythrodermic psoriasis can cover the entire body with a peeling rash that can itch or burn intensely. It can be short-lived (acute) or long-term (chronic).

What are potential triggers to look out for with psoriasis?

Prior to the condition being brought on by an environmental component, many individuals who are prone to psoriasis may go years without experiencing any symptoms.

  • Climate, in particular, cold and dry
  • Infections, including strep throat or HIV infection
  • Skin damage such as a cut, bruises, scrape, bug bite, and/or severe sunburn
  • Particular medications, such as lithium (used for mental health conditions such as bipolar disorder), hypertension medications (I.e. beta-blockers), and anti-malarial medications
  • Excessive consumption of alcohol
  • Smoking

What are the risk factors associated with psoriasis?

  • Genetics
    Psoriasis is inherited in families. Your likelihood of developing psoriasis is increased if 1 of your parents has the condition. Additionally, your risk is further increased if both of your parents have psoriasis.
  • Obesity
    According to many studies, obesity-related inflammation eventually has the potential to trigger an onset of psoriasis symptoms. Inverse psoriasis, which forms in skin folds, is a common manifestation of obesity, including the armpits, under the breasts, between the buttocks, or in the creases of the groin or belly.
  • Smoking
    Smoking not only raises the likelihood of developing psoriasis, but it may also make the condition worse.

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