Psoriasis is a chronic skin disease that affects more than 7.5 million people in the United States. Triggered by a disorder in your autoimmune system, psoriasis looks like thick, silvery scales or itchy, dry, red patches usually found on your elbows, knees, scalp, back, face, and feet.
Psoriasis patches can range from a few spots of dandruff-like scaling to major eruptions that cover large areas. Your symptoms may vary in severity and look different from others affected by psoriasis.
Below are some of the most common symptoms of psoriasis:
- Red patches of skin covered with silvery plates that resemble tiny fish scales
- Small scaling spots (commonly seen in children)
- Dry, cracked skin that may bleed
- Itching, burning, or soreness
- Thickened, pitted, or ridged nails
- Swollen and stiff joints
There are several types of psoriasis, each with distinctive symptoms:
- Plaque psoriasis: causes dry, raised, red skin lesions (plaques) covered with silvery scales.
- Nail psoriasis: affects your fingernails and toenails, causing pitting, abnormal nail growth and discoloration. It can even cause your nails to crumble.
- Scalp psoriasis: appears as red, itchy areas on the head with silvery-white scales.
- Guttate psoriasis: manifests as small, water-drop-shaped sores on your trunk, arms, legs, and scalp.
- Inverse psoriasis: causes smooth patches of red, inflamed skin in your armpits, the groin, under the breasts, and around the genitals.
- Pustular psoriasis: develops quickly, with pus-filled blisters appearing just hours after your skin becomes red and tender. It can also cause fever, chills, severe itching, and diarrhea.
- Erythrodermic psoriasis: can cover your entire body with a red, peeling rash that can itch or burn intensely.
- Psoriatic arthritis: causes painful joints that are typical of arthritis accompanied by red, inflamed, itchy skin.
Why Choose UHealth?
World-class leaders in skin care treatment. University of Miami Health System is recognized throughout South Florida and the world as a leader in caring for conditions and disorders of the skin. Backed by one of the nation’s top universities, our team uses the latest technologies and research-driven expertise to provide superior, personalized treatments for dermatologic conditions.
Compassionate care in an academic medical center. You benefit from the state-of-the-art technology and latest medical advancements developed by our researchers at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. You will receive the most accurate diagnosis and a detailed plan to keep your skin healthy.