Psoriasis is a common and non-contagious disease that can appear anywhere on the body. It is most likely, however, to develop on the scalp, hands, elbows, knees, and feet. The most common type takes the form of red and raised patches covered by an accumulation of dead skin. The more severe cases are accompanied by itching and discomfort.
How is Psoriasis Treated?
There is currently no cure, but there are treatments that can control the symptoms and make the patient feel better. Our doctor can choose a treatment based on the severity of the condition. If the patient has mild to moderate psoriasis, for example, we can prescribe any of several topical or oral medications.
Our doctor may also recommend treatments with the XTRAC Velocity-700 Excimer Laser for patients with mild to moderate psoriasis. The laser works by slowing down the growth of the affected skin cells. As psoriasis is caused by the abnormally rapid growth of the skin cells, slowing down that growth reduces the patient’s symptoms.
Light therapy or phototherapy is often recommended for patients with extensive psoriasis. As with the laser treatments, our doctor can use UVB rays. They can use the light on specific parts of the body, like the hands and/or feet, or they can treat the whole body.
If the patient has severe psoriasis, we may prescribe drugs called “biologics.” These drugs are active proteins that usually work by blocking TNF-a. The initials stand for “tumor necrosis factor-alpha,” and it’s a chemical messenger that triggers the immune system into stimulating cell inflammation. By blocking TNF-a, biologics prevent that inflammation from occurring and, thus, reduce the patient’s symptoms.
How Do You Determine the Severity of Psoriasis?
We may use any of several different methods to determine the severity of a patient’s condition. If you are suffering from psoriasis, contact Dundee Dermatology to schedule your consultation! Our office is located in West Dundee, IL, and we look forward to meeting you! Contact us today to book an appointment.