Psoriasis is a very common chronic, inflammatory, autoimmune disease of the skin that is notorious for creating social discomfort and embarrassment. It affects one to 3 percent of the US population and is characterized by symptoms such as pain, in the areas of the thick, dry, red skin lesions develop and in some cases silvery scales are formed. Psoriasis is most commonly described as looking like a plaque or patch with a silvery scale.
This condition is caused by defective signals involved in skin cell growth, causing the cells to build up rapidly onto the surface of the skin. This “piling up” of skin cells forms thick, silvery scales, and itchy, dry patches and plaques that can be painful in some cases. The appearance of psoriasis can cause significant emotional stress for those suffering from a skin disorder.
Dr. Rokhsar is a board-certified dermatologist and leading cosmetic expert that provides psoriasis treatments in NYC. Below, he discusses the causes, symptoms, and treatments available for this condition.
The exact cause of psoriasis is unclear, but it has been linked to an immune system problem with a white blood cell called T lymphocyte. These T cells travel throughout the body fighting off foreign substances, such as viruses or bacteria. But in the case of psoriasis, the T cells mistakenly attack healthy skin cells. As a result, the body increases the production of healthy skin cells, causing an ongoing cycle that creates new skin cells too quickly. The dead skin doesn’t shed quickly enough and piles up to form its characteristic thick, scaly patches.
Psoriasis is not contagious and cannot be spread by skin contact. However, it is a chronic, long-lasting condition with a genetic root, increasing the risk of development for those with a family history of the disease. It may be triggered or worsened by certain factors, such as strep throat, HIV infection, certain medications, areas of physical trauma, severe sunburn, cuts, scrapes, bug bites, stress, cold weather, smoking, or heavy alcohol consumption. The symptoms vary in severity depending on each case, but some cases may require regular attention from a dermatologist.
Psoriasis is most frequently seen on the head, groin, elbows, and knees, but can be located anywhere on the body. Nails and joints may also be affected. Without treatment intervention, symptoms can advance to debilitating levels, causing joints to become malformed to the extent that they can limit movement and cause significant pain.
Psoriasis can affect anyone, however, more women are diagnosed than men and it is found most often to appear in late teens and early adulthood. If you fall within this category, you should be aware of your susceptibility and if psoriasis is anywhere in your family history.
Furthermore, there are different types of psoriasis, including:
Psoriasis cannot be cured, but it can be successfully managed. There are many treatment options for psoriasis. Treatment can minimize plaques, boost self-esteem, and greatly improve well-being. In some patients, treatment completely clears their skin of any plaques.
Psoriasis can be treated with strong topical steroids or oral medications, as well as light or laser therapy. Psoriasis cannot be cured but it can be successfully managed. Photodynamic therapy or light therapy involves exposing the skin to ultraviolet light on a regular basis under controlled medical supervision. The UVB rays are effective because they penetrate the skin and slow the growth of affected skin cells. An excimer laser is another specially designed laser that can produce ultraviolet radiation at a precise wavelength that is used to treat stubborn cases of psoriasis such as plaques that develop on the elbow or knee.
Dermatologists such as Dr. Rokhsar can diagnose and treat more than 3,000 diseases including skin, cancer eczema, acne, and psoriasis. A consultation with Dr. Rokhsar can provide assured results and treatment plans that best fit the patient’s condition and skin type. With offices located in New York City and Garden City, Long Island, Dr. Rokhsar can provide exceptional expertise due to his deep understanding of laser treatments.
To learn more about Dr. Rokhsar’s work, contact his clinic and book a consultation today.
Plaque psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune disease that causes skin cells to reproduce quickly, leading to the formation of thick, scaly patches known as plaques. These plaques are often red or pink and covered with silvery-white scales or dead skin cells. They can appear anywhere on the body but are most commonly found on the elbows, knees, scalp, and lower back. Plaque psoriasis is the most common type of psoriasis, accounting for about 80% of all cases. It is not contagious and cannot be cured, but there are treatments available to manage symptoms and improve quality of life. These treatments include topical creams, phototherapy, and systemic medications. Individuals with plaque psoriasis need to work closely with a board-certified dermatologist to develop a treatment plan that is tailored to their specific needs.
While the exact cause of psoriasis is not fully understood, experts believe it is an autoimmune disorder. This means that the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks healthy skin cells, causing them to grow rapidly and build up on the surface of the skin. Several factors can trigger psoriasis, including stress, skin injuries (such as cuts or burns), infections (such as strep throat), certain medications (such as lithium and prednisone), and cold, dry weather. Additionally, recent studies have suggested that differences in skin composition may play a role in the development of psoriasis and atopic dermatitis.
Scalp psoriasis is caused by an immune system problem that causes skin cells to grow faster than usual. This results in the formation of thick, rough, scaly, dry, discolored plaques on your scalp and the skin around your scalp. The exact cause of psoriasis is not fully understood, but it is believed to be related to a combination of genetic and environmental factors. Many people who have plaque psoriasis also develop psoriasis on their scalp at some point, which can lead to hair loss. Other risk factors for scalp psoriasis include smoking, drinking alcohol, psychological stress, other health conditions such as diabetes and hypertension, and certain medications such as beta-blockers, antimalarial drugs, and ACE inhibitors.
In people with psoriasis, the skin cells rise too quickly and accumulate on the surface of the skin, forming red, scaly patches called plaques. These patches can be itchy, painful, and unsightly.
Psoriasis can be triggered by a variety of factors, including infections, injuries to the skin, stress, certain medications, and exposure to cold, dry weather. There are several types of psoriasis, including plaque psoriasis, guttate psoriasis, inverse psoriasis, pustular psoriasis, and erythrodermic psoriasis. The most common type is plaque psoriasis, which produces raised, scaly patches on the scalp, elbows, and knees.
Symptoms of psoriasis usually first appear between ages 15 and 25 but can start at any age. Men, women, and children of all skin colors can develop psoriasis. The condition may also affect other parts of the body, such as the hands, feet, and nails, and can lead to joint pain and swelling in some people. Psoriasis is a chronic condition that requires ongoing treatment, and people with psoriasis may experience flare-ups throughout their lives.
Psoriasis is a skin condition that affects about 2-3% of people worldwide. It is characterized by a patchy rash that can vary widely in appearance from person to person. The rashes can vary in color, tending to be shades of purple with a gray scale on brown or black skin and pink or red with a silver scale on white skin. Patches of thick raised skin covered with silvery scales form, which usually appears on the scalp, elbows, knees, or lower back, but they can develop anywhere on the skin. Very thick patches can lead to hair loss. The rash consists of red patches of plaque which have a silvery-white coating of scale. The patches can join together and cover large areas of the body. Symptoms usually include raised and scaly patches, or plaques, with defined edges that develop silver or white skin scales over them. The area can feel dry and itchy as the skin scales develop. There are different types of psoriasis, each with its unique signs and symptoms, including plaque psoriasis, guttate psoriasis, and scalp psoriasis.
The diagnosis of psoriasis is typically based on the appearance of skin lesions and plaques, which can be red, scaly, and raised. In some cases, a small sample of skin may be taken for examination under a microscope, which is known as a biopsy. This is a clinical diagnosis made by a board-certified dermatologist.
Additionally, your board-certified dermatologist may ask questions about your medical history, including whether you have experienced any symptoms such as itching or burning skin, had a recent illness or experienced severe stress, or take certain medications. Your dermatologist may also ask about any family history of psoriasis since it is a genetic condition that can be inherited.
Diagnosis of psoriasis must be made by a board-certified dermatologist because it can easily be confused with other skin conditions, such as eczema. A board dermatologist with years of training in diagnosing and managing skin conditions is a skin specialist, who can provide a more accurate diagnosis.
Psoriasis on the face requires careful treatment due to the sensitivity of the skin in this area. There are several options for treating facial psoriasis, which depend on the severity of the condition and the patient’s medical history. Topical treatments, such as medicated creams, ointments, and shampoos, are often the first line of treatment and can include mild to moderate-strength topical steroids to reduce inflammation and relieve itching. Moisturizers and emollients can also help soften the skin and reduce dryness. Phototherapy, oral medications, and biological treatments may be recommended for more severe cases.
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