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Diseases

Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

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Psoriasis

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* Not a rare disease

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Overview

Psoriasis is a skin disease that causes itchy or sore patches of thick, red skin with silvery scales. The skin on the elbows, knees, scalp, back, face, palms and feet is most often affected, but other parts of the body can be affected as well. A problem with the immune system causes psoriasis. In a process called cell turnover, skin cells that grow deep in the skin rise to the surface. Normally, this takes a month. In psoriasis, it happens in just days because the cells rise too fast. Although symptoms may come and go, for many, psoriasis is a lifelong condition. Infections, stress, dry skin and certain medications may make symptoms worse. Psoriasis usually occurs in adults. It sometimes runs in families. Treatments include creams, medications and light therapy.[1][2]
Last updated: 2/12/2010

References

  1. Psoriasis. MedlinePlus. 2010; http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/psoriasis.html. Accessed 2/12/2010.
  2. Psoriasis. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS). 2009; http://www.niams.nih.gov/Health_Info/Psoriasis/psoriasis_ff.asp. Accessed 1/1/1900.
Your Questions Answered
by the Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center

1 question(s) from the public on Psoriasis have been answered. See questions and answers. You can also submit a new question.

Basic Information

In Depth Information

  • Medscape Reference provides information on this topic. Click on the link to view this information. You may need to register to view the medical textbook, but registration is free.
  • The Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM) is a catalog of human genes and genetic disorders. Each entry has a summary of related medical articles. It is meant for health care professionals and researchers. OMIM is maintained by Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. 
  • PubMed is a searchable database of medical literature and lists journal articles that discuss Psoriasis. Click on the link to view a sample search on this topic.

Resources for Kids

  • Kids Skin Health, a American Academy of Dermatology's web site, provides kids, teens, and parents with information on skin conditions. Click on Kids Skin Health to access this Web site.
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.