Q.What is psoriasis?
A. Psoriasis is a chronic skin condition that causes skin cells to grow too quickly, resulting in thick, white, silvery, or red patches of skin. The patches range in size from small to large and typically occur on the knees, elbows, scalp, hands, feet, or lower back. Psoriasis is most common in adults, although children and teens may be affected.
Normally, skin cells mature gradually and are shed about every 28 days. New skin cells replace outer layers of the skin surface that are shed or sloughed off during normal daily activity. In psoriasis, skin cells do not mature but instead move rapidly up to the surface of the skin over 3 to 6 days and build up, forming the characteristic patches (plaques).
What causes psoriasis?
The exact cause of psoriasis is not known. In many cases it appears to be inherited. However, it is not clear whether genetic factors alone determine whether you will develop psoriasis.
Other factors that can contribute to the development of psoriasis include immune system dysfunction; cold, dry climate; skin injury; stress and anxiety; infection; and reactions to certain medications.
What are the symptoms of psoriasis?
Symptoms of psoriasis vary widely and appear in different combinations. Psoriasis can be mild, with small areas of rash. When psoriasis is moderate or severe, the skin can be inflamed with raised red areas topped with loose, silvery, scaling skin. If psoriasis is severe, it can become itchy and tender, and the large skin patches may be uncomfortable and embarrassing. The patches, called plaques, can join together, giving the skin a maplike appearance, and may cover large areas of skin, such as the entire back.
Other symptoms of psoriasis may include joint swelling, tenderness, and pain, called psoriatic arthritis. Symptoms in the fingernails and toenails include pitting, discoloration, separation of the nail from the nail bed, and the buildup of skin debris under the nails.
Symptoms may disappear (go into remission), even without treatment, and then return (flare).
How is psoriasis diagnosed?
A doctor can usually diagnose psoriasis by the appearance and location of the patches on your skin, scalp, or nails. Sometimes a skin KOH test is used to rule out a fungal infection, but otherwise, special tests are usually not needed.
How is psoriasis treated?
Treatment for psoriasis begins with skin care, which includes keeping your skin moist and lubricated. Basic treatment approaches are often used in combination and include skin products, such as creams, lotions, and shampoos; phototherapy, such as ultraviolet light treatments; and oral medications, such as cyclosporine, an immune system suppressant.
Treatment can help control symptoms, but currently there is no cure for psoriasis.
Any personal health questions or problems mental or physical. Please consult your physician !
Wishing You Great Health!
Glen Edward Mitchell
Any questions? Ask Glen!