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Diseases » Psoriasis

Psoriasis is a chronic, non contagious autoimmune disease that affects the skin and joints. Psoriasis is a condition in which rapid reproduction of skin cells resulting in red, dry or scaly patches of skin observed. The body does not shed up these cells so these cells pile up on the surface of the skin and form lesions. The scaly patches are called plaques and these occur usually on skin of elbows and knees. Skin rapidly accumulates at these sites and result in silvery white appearance. Mostly fingernails and toenails are affected.

Psoriasis is seen world wide in both men and women. It affects 1 to 3% of world population. The disorder is a chronic recurring condition that varies in severity from minor localized patches to complete body coverage. Patients with severe psoriasis may have more social embarrassment.

Types: Various types of psoriasis are as follows

• Plaque psoriasis - it is the most common type of psoriasis. It affects 80- 90 % of the people. In this type, skin is red and covery with silvery scales. Red plaques are seen in circular or oval form and sometimes cause itching also. This is seen on palms of hands and soles of feet mostly. These are persistent.

• Guttate Psoriasis - these lesions are oval and drop-like shape. These are mostly found on trunk, legs, face, scalp and arms. It goes off without any treatment.

• Inverse Psoriasis - In this patches are seen as bright red, smooth, non scaly. These are found on folds of the skin, armpits, under the breasts, buttocks. These irritated inflamed areas are aggravated by the sweat and skin rubbing together in folds.

• Pustular Psoriasis - its an uncommon form of psoriasis. People with this condition have raised bumps on the skin that are filled with pus and the skin is reddish in color. They may be found in localized area or spread at various areas of the body.

Different types of Pustular Psoriasis include:

1) Localized Pustular psoriasis: Palmoplantar pustulosis is a localized form of Pustular psoriasis, it occurs usually on palms of hands and soles of feet. It typically affects the middle aged women, and difficult to treat.

2) Acropustulosis: It is a localized form of Pustular psoriasis. It usually affects the fingers, thumbs, and toes. Pustules appear and then burst leaving bright red areas and may ooze and become scaly.

3) Generalized (von zumbusch) Pustular psoriasis: In this skin becomes red and sore. Pistules develop in pin-point form and spread forming large patches. These are seen on folds and groin area. People with this condition may have high fever and occasionally die.

• Erythrodermic Psoriasis - This condition is quite serious and body appears to be covered in a red and peeling rash causing itchness or burns. People with this condition are prone to infection and dehydration.

• Psoriatic arthritis - This condition is seen in person having both psoriasis and arthritis. Arthritis is a join inflammation. It affects 5-8% of people with psoriasis. If the arthritis affects the hands and feet then small joints of the hands and feet may be swollen and deformed, and nail changes.

Psoriasis of the Scalp - Scalp may have fine dry scaly skin or heavy crusted plaque areas. These plaques can peel off in crusted clumps.


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