By Dr. Hope Mitchell, FLTN Columnist- Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory disorder. Patients with psoriasis have a genetic predisposition for the illness, which most commonly manifests itself on the skin of the elbows, knees, and scalp. The joints are also affected by psoriasis in up to 30 percent of patients with the disease.
The triggering event for psoriasis is unknown in most cases, but commonly appears after an upper respiratory infection. Psoriasis has a tendency to wax and wane with flares related to systemic or environmental factors, including life stress events and infection (e.g., streptococcal, staphylococcal and human immunodeficiency virus). Other factors besides stress and infection have also been observed to trigger psoriasis exacerbations including cold, trauma, alcohol and drugs (e.g., iodides, steroid withdrawal, aspirin, lithium, beta-blockers, botulinum A and antimalarials).
Despite many psoriasis suffer’s fears, there are actually numerous therapies available to treat this disease. Some options include: proper skin barrier maintenance, solar or ultraviolet radiation, topical preparations (corticosteroids, coal tar, retinoids, keratolyics and vitamin D analogs), oral medications (methotrexate and immunomodulators), and injectables (biologics).
If you or someone you know has psoriasis, please be encouraged to see a dermatologist to discuss treatment options for you.
Call Mitchell Dermatology at 419-872-HOPE (4673) to schedule an appointment with Dr. Hope Mitchell, a Board Certified Dermatologist, and like our office on Facebook. Visit the website at http://www.mitchellderm.com, or email email@example.com.