What Is Psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory skin disease. This is a genetic disease that manifests itself in the form of characteristic formations of papules or pink-red plaques visible to the eye, the surface of which is flaky and covered with scales on the patient’s body.
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The disease is often accompanied by severe itching and pain, causing suffering to the patient, both physical and mental. Rashes of psoriasis can appear on any part of the body, but most often, they are localized on the scalp, elbows and hands of the patient.
Chronic psoriasis on the head especially often causes emotional discomfort to patients because it cannot be hidden under clothes.
What Causes Psoriasis?
The exact cause of psoriasis is unknown. Genetic predisposition plays a significant role in its development: about 40% of patients with psoriasis or psoriatic arthritis have a family history of the disease (the presence of psoriasis in close blood relatives).
The development and course of the disease is also influenced by lifestyle, environmental factors and habits: smoking, obesity (being overweight), taking certain medications (such as beta-blockers, lithium, antimalarial drugs), infections, alcohol and stress.
Symptoms Of Psoriasis
- Skin rashes
- Flaky scalp
- Nail changes
The disease has a chronic course and proceeds with periods of remission and exacerbations.
What Causes Psoriasis?
Existing therapies are helping to cope with exacerbations, prolong periods of remission and significantly improve the quality of life of patients. However, psoriasis cannot be completely cured; even with prolonged good condition, repeated exacerbations are possible.
In the treatment of psoriasis, drugs are used for external use (lotions, creams, ointments, shampoos for the scalp), as well as systemic therapy.
The choice of the method of treatment depends on the severity of the disease, the localization and prevalence of the process, the presence of concomitant diseases, the individual response to previous treatment, the patient’s capabilities and desires.
In some cases, psoriasis requires just external therapy, and the following drugs are usually used.
- Analogs of vitamin D
- Calcineurin inhibitors
- Tar preparations
In more severe cases, in addition to external therapy, systemic therapy and phototherapy are used.
For the treatment of psoriasis at deRMA Skin Institute, our experienced and specialized dermatologists conducts a full examination of the patient’s skin, nails, hair, and mucous membranes, collects an anamnesis and, based on the data obtained, makes a diagnosis. In the vast majority of cases, additional studies and findings are not required. Sometimes a skin biopsy is done to clarify the diagnosis. If you suspect the presence of concomitant diseases, you may need to consult other specialists (therapists, rheumatologists, or ophthalmologists).
To obtain optimal treatment results, it is advisable for a patient with psoriasis to strictly adhere to the recommended treatment regimen. Please request a consultation online or call (519) 836-8558 to schedule an appointment with one of our dermatologists to help treat your psoriasis today.