To mark World Psoriasis Day on Tuesday 29th October 2019, we asked Dr Tee Wei Siah, Consultant Dermatologist at One Hatfield Hospital, to tell us more about this condition.
Psoriasis is more than just a skin condition, and it can affect people physically and psychologically. Although there is no cure for psoriasis, it is important to remember that it can be managed. With the right treatment and advice, many people live well with psoriasis (source: Psoriasis Association).
What is Psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a common chronic skin condition that causes red, flaky patches of skin covered with silvery scales. It affects 1 in 50 people and occurs equally in men and women.
Psoriasis is not contagious and may appear at any age.
What causes psoriasis?
Genetic and environmental factors contribute to the development of psoriasis.
Everyone is different so sometimes people notice psoriasis may be triggered by infections, sunlight, stress, injury to the skin and certain medications.
What impact can it have on health?
Patients may be affected by psoriasis in a variety of ways. Psoriasis not only affects the skin and it may cause nail changes and joint pain, stiffness and swelling which needs to be jointly managed by a rheumatologist, a dermatologist and a GP.
Patients with psoriasis may suffer from low self-esteem and confidence. There is also an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure in patient with moderate to severe psoriasis. GPs may explore psychological impacts and assess cardiovascular risk factors in patients with moderate to severe psoriasis.
What are the treatment options?
Psoriasis is a long term condition which tends to flare up from time to time. There is no cure for psoriasis but there is a variety of effective treatment options to manage this condition.
Topical treatment with creams, ointments and lotions is usually suitable in patients with mild psoriasis.
A patient should ask for a referral if their skin condition fails to improve with creams and lotions.
Phototherapy and systemic treatment with tablets or injections could be considered in patients with diffuse or difficult to manage psoriasis.
If you have any concerns Dr Tee Wei Siah is available at One Hatfield Hospital either by booking directly through our Reservations Team on 01707 44 33 33 or by referral from your GP
One Hatfield is unique providing diagnostic care and same or next day appointments, and is ideally located for patients in Hatfield, St Albans, Stevenage, Watford, North London and throughout Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire.