Psoriasis & Psoriatic Arthritis
Psoriasis is a very serious, lifelong, systemic condition involving the immune system with skin and joint manifestations. Current estimates say that roughly 8 million people have Psoriasis, and up to 30% of those patients have psoriatic arthritis. Like most other chronic skin conditions, there is a genetic susceptibility as well as environmental factors that trigger it (common reasons include: infections, trauma, medications and stress).
At Michigan Dermatology Institute, we pride ourselves on being a psoriasis center of excellence. As members of the national psoriasis foundation and with active medical research for psoriasis, we are your trusted source for caring for your condition. Luckily, we have a plethora of effective and safe treatments to suit your needs, so make your appointment today and we can help you regain control!
Q: Aside from my skin, what else does psoriasis affect?
A: Psoriasis is a total body condition. Patients with uncontrolled psoriasis have a higher risk of having heart attacks, strokes and dying earlier than they should otherwise. There is a destructive arthritis along with cardiovascular complications that can be debilitating and life changing. Depression, digestive issues and even cancer has been associated with having psoriasis.
Q: What else should I be aware of regarding “internal” psoriasis?
A: There are many symptoms that patients with psoriasis experience more often than people without psoriasis including: generalized fatigue, difficulty getting out of bed in the morning or getting out of the car after a long drive, and issues with your digestive track (abdominal pain, bloody diarrhea, etc). It is crucial to understand that psoriasis is more than red, scaly, sometimes itchy plaques on your skin.
Q: What kinds of treatments are available?
A: Thankfully, psoriasis is a major condition that has experienced a dedicated pharmaceutical and research interest that has led to a vast number of exceptional treatments. Treatments are based on skin (location, severity and symptoms) and whether any internal comorbidities are present, in particular psoriatic arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease. Standard skin care and healthy life decisions (including exercise, stress relief and a healthy diet) are all recommended to help with overall health of the condition. Additionally, there are numerous topical therapies, light-based therapies (Narrowband-UVB and excimer laser), and systemic treatments (both oral and injectable – including one’s seen on TV).