Psoriasis: causes, symptoms, treatment

Psoriasis is a disease for which they appear on the skin red, scaly and dead skin rash, covered with silvery-white scales.

Usually these rashes appear on the elbows, knees, scalp and back but can also occur in all other positions. Most people rashes small. In some cases they can itch or typhus.


In Russia the psoriasis suffers around 1% of the population, often scaly ringworm is common in indigenous peoples of the north. Men and women suffer equally often. The first psoriasis symptoms appear under the age of 30 years, but no later than the beginning of psoriasis are no longer a rarity. The severity of psoriasis each person is very variable. Someone psoriasis only a little annoying, while others psoriasis prevents you from leading a normal life.

Psoriasis is a chronic disease, that there are usually periods of remission without symptoms or with a slightly pronounced symptoms, after that you experience periods of exacerbation, when symptoms become more apparent.

Psoriasis occurs during the acceleration phase of the reproduction process of the body cells of the skin. The cells of the skin are usually products that are changed every 3-4 months, but with psoriasis this process is shortened up to 3-7 days. As a result there occurs an accumulation of skin cells, leading to the appearance of characteristic changes in the body.

The causes of psoriasis up to the end are not clear, it is believed that the reproduction of the cells of the skin associated with disorders of the immune system. The immune system is a natural defense of the body against infections and disease, but people with psoriasis has by mistake attacks the healthy cells of the skin.

Psoriasis can be inherited, and therefore it is believed that this disease there are and the genetic factor. However, it is not yet clear which role is played by genetics in the onset of psoriasis.

Many people have psoriasis symptoms appear or worsen after a certain event, which is called the trigger. The possible trigger factors for psoriasis include damage to the skin, infectious diseases of the throat and intake of certain medications. This disease is not contagious and cannot be transmitted from one person to another.

If you suspect psoriasis you should consult a doctor. Often the doctor can make a diagnosis judging from the appearance of your skin. Usually for the diagnosis and treatment of psoriasis the patient's head to a dermatologist — specialist in skin diseases.

Even if for curing psoriasis is not impossible, there are a number of treatments that can alleviate the symptoms and improve the appearance of the skin. In most cases, in the first place is to be assigned to local treatment, for example, analogues of vitamin D or corticosteroids local action. In the most serious cases, when does not help, other treatment methods, can be applied in a systemic treatment. Systemic treatment is the oral intake or injections of drugs that have a therapeutic effect on the whole body.

For some people, psoriasis is just a small problem, but sometimes it can greatly affect your life. For example, some patients suffering from psoriasis have low self-esteem due to the fact how the disease affects their appearance. Often in psoriasis appears painful sensitivity, pain and swelling of the joints and connective tissues. Is called psoriatic arthritis.

The symptoms of psoriasis

In most cases, the psoriasis, cycles: every couple of weeks or months the disease worsening, and therefore, the symptoms are less apparent, or disappear, and arrives in remission.

There are several types of psoriasis. Many become ill only a form of psoriasis, even if, perhaps, the disease of two different types at the same time. A type can be transformed into another type or become worse. If you suspect psoriasis you should consult a doctor.

Common types of psoriasis

In Psoriasis vulgaris. It is the most common form of psoriasis, which represents approximately 90% of all cases. Symptoms — dry red skin formation, the so-called plaque covered with silvery-white scales. Usually appear you have on the elbows, knees, scalp, and back, but can appear in any other field. The platelets may itch and (or) the typhus. In more severe cases, the skin over the joints may crack and bleed.

psoriasis of the scalp-part

Psoriasis of the scalp (seborrheic psoriasis) can occur on the scalp or in the areas of the skin, and also on the back and chest. Causes skin rash reddish, covered with dense silvery-white scales. Some people have this type of psoriasis causes severe itching, while others do not bother him. In the most severe cases can lead to hair loss, often temporary.

Psoriasis of the nails. In about half of patients with psoriasis, the disease spreads to the nails. In the psoriasis in your nails can appear to be small pits or depressions, may lose color and shape. Often, the nails may falter, and to turn away from the nail bed, where they are located. In more severe cases, the nail can crumble.

In psoriasis in the form of drops are small (less than 1 cm) plate in the form of drops on the chest, arms, legs, and under the hair on the head. Is a high likelihood that the guttate psoriasis completely will be held in a few weeks, but some people turns into the common psoriasis. This type of psoriasis sometimes occurs after a streptococcal infection of the throat, and they get sick more often children and adolescents.

Psoriasis of the folds - affects the folds of the skin, such as under the armpits, groin, between the buttocks or under the breasts. They can appear great smooth precipitation in some or all of these areas. The symptoms become more acute when the friction caused by transpiration and, therefore, can provide particular discomfort in the hot season.

Pustular psoriasis

The most rare type of psoriasis, the skin appear pustules (blisters with blotchy). Different types of pustular psoriasis affect different parts of the body.

Generalized pulstole psoriasis (psoriasis background Tsumbush). Pustules occur on the surface of the skin and grow very quickly. Pus is composed of white blood cells and its appearance is not always directly connected with the infection. Pustules can be cyclic appear again every few days or weeks. At the beginning of these cycles psoriasis background Tsumbush can cause fever, chills, weight loss, and chronic fatigue.

Hand foot psoriasis. Pustules appear on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet. Gradually are transformed into pustules, rounded brown plate with scales, which then detach from the skin. Pustules may reappear every few days or weeks.

Pustular psoriasis enteropathica (acrobustulosis). Pustules appear on the fingers of the hands and feet. Then the pustules burst, after their remain in the red areas, which can secrete a liquid, or covered with scales. Can lead to painful deformities of the nails.

Erythrodermic psoriasis (psoriatic eritrodermia)

Erythrodermic psoriasis — a rare form of psoriasis that affects nearly all of the surface of the skin. This causes a strong itching or burning sensation. Because erythrodermic psoriasis your body can lose proteins and liquid. This can lead to the appearance of other complications, such as infection, dehydration, heart failure, hypothermia and exhaustion.

The causes of psoriasis

Psoriasis occurs when skin cells are divided and are updated more quickly than normal. The causes of psoriasis up to the end are not clear. The body produces new cells in the deepest layer of the skin. These cells are gradually moved upwards. Exiting on the surface, they die. This process is normal, proceeds gradually and imperceptibly for us. The skin cells are updated once every 3-4 weeks.

People with psoriasis this process only lasts 3-7 days. Consequently, it is not yet fully developed quickly as the cells accumulate on the surface of the skin, causing the appearance of red, peeling and dead skin rash covered with silvery-white scales. Considered that in patients with psoriasis, the skin cells change more quickly due to disorders of the immune system.

The immune system is the protection of the body, which helps to fight the infection. One of the main types of cells, using the immune system, called T-lymphocytes.

T-lymphocytes usually move through the body, find the infection and struggle with them. People with psoriasis have of error attack the healthy cells of the skin. This causes the immune system to produce more T lymphocytes, and the reproduction of new skin cells faster than normal.

Until the end it is not clear exactly what causes the rupture of the immune system, although it may be that a certain role in this play some of the genes and environmental factors.

Psoriasis is inherited. One of the three patients with psoriasis has a close relative with this disease. However, it is not yet clear which role is played by genetics in the onset of psoriasis. The results of the research indicate, for the development of psoriasis can respond a number of genes. Probably make a person more prone to this disease can their various combinations. However, the legacy is not of itself the psoriasis, but only the predisposition to him, that is, the presence of these genes does not mean that you need to develop this disease.

Triggers of psoriasis

Many people have psoriasis symptoms appear or worsen after a certain event, which is called the trigger. If you know your triggers, this can help to avoid worsening of symptoms. Common examples of triggers:

  • the damage of the skin, for example, a cut, a scratch, an insect bite or a burn solar (the so-called phenomenon Kebner);
  • the abuse of alcohol;
  • structure;
  • the stress;
  • hormonal changes, particularly in women (for example, during puberty and menopause);
  • some drugs, for example, lithium, some antimalarial medicines, anti-inflammatory drugs, including ibuprofen, ACE inhibitors (for the treatment ) and beta-blockers (for the treatment of congestive heart failure);
  • throat infections — in some people, in particular children and young people, after a throat infection streptococcal develops a form of psoriasis, called guttate psoriasis, even though in most of the cases after the throat infection streptococcal psoriasis does not occur;
  • other immune system disorders, such as HIV, which cause the appearance or exacerbation of psoriasis.

Psoriasis is not contagious and cannot be transmitted from one person to another.

The diagnosis of psoriasis

As a general rule, for the diagnosis of psoriasis, it is sufficient to the external examination of the skin.


In rare cases, requires the taking of a biopsy (a small sample of the skin), which is then sent to a laboratory for study under the microscope. This allow to identify a particular type of psoriasis and rule out other diseases of the skin, such as seborrheic dermatitis, plan, red ringworm, simple chronic zoster (shingles) and pink zoster.

As a general rule, the diagnosis and treatment of psoriasis is carried out under the supervision of a physician-dermatologist — specialist in skin diseases. If your doctor suspects you have psoriatic arthritis, which sometimes occurs as a complication of psoriasis, you may refer you to a rheumatologist. Rheumatologist — a doctor who specialises in rheumatoid arthritis.

You can take a blood sample for analysis, to rule out other diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, and also do an x-ray of the joints affected by the disease.

The treatment of psoriasis

Completely heal the psoriasis is not possible, however, with the help of treatment it is possible to reduce the severity and frequency of exacerbations. Usually psoriasis treatment is carried out under the supervision of a dermatologist, in case of involvement in a process of the joints assigned to the council rheumatologist. If the symptoms of psoriasis are significantly expressed and poorly respond to treatment, your doctor may refer you to the hospital, in the department of dermatology.

The one or the other method of treatment would apply depending on the type and severity of psoriasis and of the skin, in the throes of the disease. If the symptoms of psoriasis are expressed moderately and do not grow, doctor, perhaps, you limit the allocation of external funds, for example, in the form of a cream. In the acute phase is usually assigned to the most severe treatment with drugs taken in in.

There is a wide range of tools for the treatment of psoriasis, but it can be difficult to determine which is the most effective remedy. Talk with your doctor if you feel that the treatment will not work or have side effects that can cause discomfort.

Treatment methods are divided into 3 categories:

  • local treatment — on the skin apply creams and ointments;
  • phototherapy — your skin radiated with a particular type of ultraviolet rays;
  • system — ingestion or in the form of injections of drugs that have a therapeutic effect on the whole body.

Often, the various methods of treatment combined. As well as the suffering from psoriasis treatment is necessary in the long term, it makes sense to draw up a written plan of handling of medicines, which must every day to do. The doctor should regularly check your status and, if necessary, adjust the treatment plan.