Psoriasis

Posted by e-Medical PPT Friday, November 12, 2010
Psoriasis is a chronic, autoimmune disease that appears on the skin. It occurs when the immune system sends out faulty signals that speed up the growth cycle of skin cells. Psoriasis is not contagious.There are various types of psoriasis: plaque, guttate,pustular and erythrodermic. The most common form, plaque psoriasis, is commonly seen as red and white hues of scaly patches appearing on the top first layer of the epidermis.
In plaque psoriasis, skin rapidly accumulates at these sites, which gives it a silvery-white appearance. Plaques frequently occur on the skin of the elbows and knees, but can affect any area, including the scalp, palms of hands and soles of feet, and genitals. In contrast to eczema, psoriasis is more likely to be found on the outer side of the joint.
Fingernails and toenails are frequently affected (psoriatic nail dystrophy).Psoriasis can also cause inflammation of the joints, which is known as psoriatic arthritis.
The cause of psoriasis is not fully understood, but it is believed to have a genetic component, and local psoriatic changes can be triggered by an injury to the skin known as the Koebner phenomenon.Various environmental factors have been suggested as aggravating to psoriasis, including stress, withdrawal of systemic corticosteroid, excessive alcohol consumption, and smoking, but few have shown statistical significance.

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