Psoriasis is a chronic condition that affects less than 2% of the U.S. population.
Although the exact cause of psoriasis is unknown, it is believed
to have a strong genetic component.
Psoriasis most often manifests as a silvery, scaly, red rash that occurs in clumps.
The rash is seen most often on the extensor surface of the elbows and knees,
buttock crease, and scalp. Psoriasis of the scalp can result in hair loss.
Other, associated conditions include changes in the finger nails
(pitting, splitting, and dimpling).
In addition, approximately 5% of patients with psoriasis will develop
a form of arthritis that affects the small joints in the hands.
Psoriasis is a chronic rash that may "come and go" but usually does not disappear.
The unpredictability of the rash makes it more difficult to treat.
A strong relationship has been seen observed between emotional stress
and the onset of a psoriasis flare-up. Management of stress is an important
part of the overall treatment of this condition.
Treatment is with topical lotions, shampoos, and cold tar preparations.
Topical corticosteroid creams (Cortaid, triamcinolone acetonide),
coal tar preparations (Denorex Shampoo, Neutrogena T/Gel Shampoo,
DHS Tar Shampoo), methotrexate, and ultraviolet light have all used in
Special medications can be taken to enhance
the effect of ultraviolet light exposure in more advanced cases.
Many "over the counter" medications exist for the treatment of this problem.
The dermatologist is the expert in the care of this problem.
For more info, download Psoriasis Treatments, a free ebook.