Psoriasis is a chronic disease of the skin. It is now well known that changes in the immune system lead to inflammation and rapid turnover of skin causing redness, scale and thickening of the skin commonly seen with psoriasis. Psoriasis affects people of all ages with about 2-4% of the population allover the world suffering from this disease. The onset of psoriasis commonly peaks in the young adult age group from the late teens to the early twenties and then again in the late middle age population. Once developed, psoriasis tends to affect people for the long term unless treated, although it can fluctuate in severity along the way. It can have a significant impact on the self-esteem of patients.
Psoriasis is typically seen as red patches with silvery scale on the elbows and knees or scalp, however it can affect people in any location on the skin. Psoriasis can be itchy or tender. Once thought of purely as a disease of the skin, it is now realised that psoriasis is a systemic disease, associated with other internal medical problems such as diabetes, arthritis, heart and cardiovascular disease and depression. In some cases, it may be related to underlying infections or medications.
Sometimes other skin conditions may look very similar to psoriasis. A dermatologist will closely examine the skin and ask many questions about the changes on the skin and the patient’s history in order to correctly diagnose psoriasis. This is essential to ensure psoriasis is managed correctly.
Psoriasis generally is not well managed in our communities. Many people suffer under the misconception that nothing can be done to improve psoriasis. While psoriasis cannot be cured, many new treatments are available. At Central Dermatology Clinic we can offer both traditional and cutting edge treatments for psoriasis. We can customise treatment plans for patients depending on the severity of their psoriasis and dependant on what parts of the skin are affected. There is always something that can be done to help patients with psoriasis. Many of our patients are completely free of the signs and symptoms of psoriasis while under our care.