There is nothing more self-conscious than having a visible rash on your skin. Psoriasis is a common, genetic autoimmune disease that causes people’s skin cells to grow at a faster than normal rate. This creates red, scaly patches on areas like the knees, elbows and scalp. Although it’s not contagious, many people living with psoriasis feel isolated and excluded. The good news is, there has been recent progress on new therapies that have amazing results in treating the condition.
Biologics are medicines made from proteins, antibodies and other substances that are found in living things. Doctors inject these medicines into the bloodstream, which then block the altered immune system that contributes to psoriasis. Biologics are intended to curb white blood cells, block one of the main messenger chemicals in the immune system, stop interleukins and bind to proteins that create redness. Although they can be expensive, most biologics are FDA approved and clinical trials showed that it lowered psoriasis activity in at least 75 percent of patients.
Psoriasis phototherapy works by focusing ultraviolet light on the problematic areas. Even regular exposure to sunlight can dramatically improve symptoms in patients. In recent years, more effective forms of light therapy have been approved by the FDA. UVB therapy focuses the ultraviolet rays directly on the affected areas, requiring fewer treatments.
Topical treatments are ointments that are applied directly to the affected skin. These are a great option for patients looking to get relief, without the system-wide side effects that come with pill or injection treatments. There are various prescription creams and retinoids that aim at relieving inflammation and itching.
Schedule an appointment with Knoxville Dermatology Group to determine which treatment option is right for you. To make an appointment, contact us at (865) 690-9467 or online at www.knoxderm.com.