Psoriasis is a pervasive skin disease caused by an overactive immune system. It accelerates the life cycle of skin cells, resulting in a buildup of cells on the skin’s surface. This accumulation of cells leads to uncomfortable symptoms like flaking, inflammation, and thick, white, silvery, or red patches on the skin. Psoriasis is itchy and severe cases can even be painful.
The Mayo Clinic identifies these symptoms:
- Red patches of skin covered with thick, silvery scales
- Small scaling spots (commonly seen in children)
- Dry, cracked skin that may bleed
- Itching, burning or soreness
- Thickened, pitted or ridged nails
- Swollen and stiff joints
The most common form of psoriasis is plaque psoriasis. It causes dry, raised, red skin lesions covered with silvery scales. The plaques might be itchy or painful and there may be few or many. They can occur anywhere on the body, including the genitals and the soft tissue inside the mouth.
Other types include: nail psoriasis, attacking the nails; guttate psoriasis, triggered by a bacterial infection and primarily affecting young adults and children; inverse psoriasis, featuring smooth patches of inflamed skin affecting the armpits, groin, under the breasts and around genitals; pustular psoriasis, characterized by puss-filled blisters; erythrodermic psoriasis, covering the entire body with a painful, red, peeling rash; and psoriatic arthritis, causing painful, swollen joints in addition to the skin symptoms.
Psoriasis is not curable, but the good news is that its symptoms are manageable. If you suspect that you may be suffering from psoriasis, make an appointment now to get a proper diagnosis from your DermSurgery Associates physician.
Mild cases may be treated with topical medications and bath solutions. Treatments for more severe cases may include oral medications, steroids or light therapy.
XTRAC Excimer Laser therapy is an exciting new treatment for stubborn psoriasis, particularly effective for hard-to-treat areas like the scalp, hands and feet. The expert dermatologists at DermSurgery Associates use XTRAC to deliver a focused beam of UVB light which attacks the DNA of the t-cells, effectively clearing unsightly psoriatic skin plaques. Because it concentrates light on active lesions, XTRAC allows your health care technician to deliver the high therapeutic doses necessary for rapid clearing without risk to healthy skin. Often covered by insurance, this treatment delivers long-lasting, effective relief from painful psoriasis and other skin conditions like vitiligo, atopic dermatitis, and leukoderma.
Call DermSurgery Associates today to explore your psoriasis treatment options. You can reach us at (713) 791-9966 to set an appointment with one of our highly trained skin care experts. Don’t wait another day!