Psoriasis Dermatologist NJ
Psoriasis is a chronic skin condition which affects about 7.5 million Americans. With psoriasis, the immune system turns against skin cells, making them grow and multiply at a hyperactive rate. This accumulation of skin leads to a rash with red, scaly patches called “plaques.” Although there is currently no cure for psoriasis, many effective treatments are available to help clear symptoms and provide long-term control of inflammation.
Most Common Treatments
- Topical medications are usually prescribed for patients with small areas of affected skin. Prescription topical creams and ointments slow down or normalize excessive skin cell growth and reduce inflammation. Some contain steroids. Other topical medications include a synthetic or naturally occurring active form of vitamin D3, salicylic acid or coal tar. Some topical medications have side effects which your physician will discuss with you and help you manage.
- Ultraviolet light has powerful anti-inflammatory properties that can clear psoriasis from the skin. Phototherapy treatments are performed three times per week and most patients become free of symptoms after 12 weeks. Excimer laser therapy spares healthy skin and treats only the targeted psoriasis, promoting faster clearing with fewer treatments. Difficult-to-treat areas such as the scalp and recalcitrant plaques can be cared for with this therapy.
- Biologic treatments may benefit people who haven’t had success with other approaches. Biologic agents are administered by injection and precisely target specific parts of the immune system to reduce inflammation in the skin.