What Is It? It is the most common type of psoriasis – about 80% of psoriasis cases is plague psoriasis. It is a very common skin condition that causes skin irritation and redness. The people who get this have thick red skin with flaky silver/white patches known as scales. It occurs most often to people 15-35 years of age, but can happen to anybody. It is a chronic disease, meaning that it cannot be cured but can be controlled.
What Happens? This condition is thought to be passed down through genes. Doctors think it occurs when the body’s immune system confuses healthy cells for dangerous materials. Skin cells typically grow deep in the skin and come to the surface about once a month. For people with psoriasis, the process is too fast, so dead skin cells build up on the surface of the skin.
How Do You Get It? It is not contagious, and doesn’t spread to other body systems, but can get worse if untreated. These things may trigger and attack of psoriasis or make it harder to treat: Viral or bacteria infections, including upper respiratory infections and strep throat. Dry skin or dry air Injury to the skin-burns, cuts, insect bites, etc. Stress Not enough sunlight Sunburn (too much sunlight) Too much alcohol
How Does It Harm You? Usually, people who have weaker immune systems have worse cases of psoriasis. Psoriasis can appear rapidly or gradually. Many times, it goes away and keeps coming back again and again. Symptoms: Red, flaky, irritated patches of skin Red patches are able to appear anywhere on the body, including the scalp The skin can be: Itchy – The itching may cause bleeding, affecting the circulatory system. Dry and covered with flaky, silver skin (scales) Salmon-colored Thick and raised Other symptoms can include: Joint pain (skeletal) Nail changes-yellow/brown nails, thick nails, dents in the nail, nail lifts off from the underneath skin (integumentary) Severe dandruff (integumentary) This type generally occurs on the elbows, knees, scalp, and lower back
How Does It Harm You? Most of the symptoms harm the integumentary system, because almost all of the symptoms happen to the skin.
Treatment There are three treatment options: Topical treatments-skin lotions, ointments, creams, and shampoos Cortisone ointments and creams Creams to remove the scaling Dandruff shampoos (over-the-counter or prescribed) Moisturizers Prescription medicines containing vitamins A or D Phototherapy-uses light to treat psoriasis Medical treatment where your skin is exposed to ultra violet light UVB penetrates the skin and slows down the growth of affected skin cells Pills or biologics (injected into body)-usually these are only used if you have a moderate or severe case. The pills suppress the immune’s system reaction to the disorder. Biologics block the action of the immune system T cells, or by
Treatment Effects Topical treatments won’t have any side effects on anything but your skin, because nothing is being entered into your body. Biologic drugs can cause serious side effects, but it is not very common. The main concern is that it will cause infections or lymphoma (cancer of the lymph nodes – immune system). In phototherapy your condition may worsen before it gets better. Overexposure can cause reddening or itching of the skin, which infects the integumentary system.