Psoriasis is a chronic non-infectious disease that most often manifests as rashes and peeling skin.
From psoriasis affects about 4% of the world population. It can develop at any age from birth to old age, but most psoriasis “loves” young. This is evidenced by the fact that 70% of patients develop psoriasis before the age of 20 years.
If the skin got a rash, reminiscent of psoriasis – you should consult a dermatologist. Psoriatic lesions are scaly itchy patches of various sizes. While plaque psoriasis can be stationed on the elbows, knees, scalp or other parts of the body. A doctor can make an accurate diagnosis and, depending on its form, to prescribe treatment.
Causes of psoriasis
Psoriasis is an abnormal reaction of the body to external stimuli, by which some parts of the body the top layer of skin dies off much faster than normal. If you normally cycle of division and maturation of skin cells occurs at 3-4 weeks, in psoriasis this process occurs in just 4-5 days.
Currently psoriasis is considered multifactorial hereditary disease: the basis of disease is not one but a whole range of reasons – immunological changes, metabolic disorders associated with endocrine and neurological disorders. Thus one can say for sure psoriasis is not infectious, and therefore not a contagious disease.
Causes of psoriasis are still not completely found. There are various theories.
According to one theory, there are two types of psoriasis:
- Psoriasis type I is called inherited breakdowns of the immune system. This form of psoriasis affects about 65% of people, and the disease manifests itself at a young age from 18 to 25 years.
- Psoriasis type II appears in people older than 40 years. With this type of psoriasis is not contagious and is not associated with breakdowns in the cells of the immune system. Unlike psoriasis type I who prefers the skin, psoriasis type II often affects the nails and joints.
According to another theory, the cause of psoriasis are exceptionally immune dysfunction caused by various factors: it could be stress, or infectious disease, or cold climate, or poor diet. For example, it is noted that alcohol can cause exacerbation of psoriasis, especially beer, champagne, liquor. Eating foods containing vinegar, peppers, chocolate, also worsens the disease course and may exacerbate psoriasis. According to this theory, psoriasis is a systemic disease. This means that when a serious malfunction of the immune system, the process may spread to other organs and tissues, for example, on the joints. The result can resetcapability arthritis, which is characterized by the lesion of the small joints of the hands and feet.
Symptoms of psoriasis
Symptoms of psoriasis are inflamed, scaly patches of red, accompanied by severe itching. Such spots (plaques) often located on the scalp, knees and elbow joints, lower back and in areas of skin folds . Approximately a quarter of patients affects the nails.
Depending on seasonal recurrence (disease exacerbation) distinguish three types of psoriasis: winter, summer, uncertain. Most common winter type of psoriasis.
In the period of exacerbation of symptoms of psoriasis on the hands, knees, head and also in your lower back and in places where skin folds are in the form of plaques reddish color. Their size varies from a pinhead to large areas of the palm size and more.
Rashes are usually accompanied by flaking and painful itching. In the process of peeling the surface flakes easily exfoliated, are more dense, located deep (hence the second name of psoriasis — psoriasis). Sometimes in the area of affected skin cracks occur and suppuration.
Normal psoriasis is characterized by the so-called koebner’s phenomenon: the development of psoriatic plaques in places of trauma or scratching of the skin.
Approximately a quarter of patients affects the nails. This raises a point of deepening and spotting the nail plate. In addition, the nails may thicken and crumble.
In the summer, under the influence of sunlight, in patients with a winter type of psoriasis symptoms lessen, and sometimes even disappear. Sick summer type of psoriasis, on the contrary, it is recommended to avoid sun exposure, because it worsens the disease.
Diagnose psoriasis by a dermatologist. To him in the appearance of skin rashes similar to psoriasis — plaques of various sizes, red, itchy and flaky. To clarify the diagnosis may require a skin biopsy.
When a significant manifestations of the disease used the following methods of treatment of psoriasis:
- cryotherapy is a method of cold exposures;
- plasmapheresis is a blood purification,
- ultraviolet light therapy — the treatment is short-term procedures, similar to the Solarium. For more effective treatment of psoriasis this method is often combined with taking drugs (PUVA therapy).
In any case, do not attempt to engage in the treatment of psoriasis with ultraviolet light without the doctor’s recommendations. Psoriasis small doses of ultraviolet light are healing and increased — on the contrary, can spur the development of the disease. The same applies to sunbathing.
Unfortunately, no one knows how to cure psoriasis completely because the body “keeps the memory” of the disease in the form of biochemical, immunological and functional changes. A recurrence of psoriasis can occur at any time, therefore, patients with this diagnosis should be monitored by a dermatologist.