Psoriasis – a simple explanation
What is psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a long-term (chronic) scaling disease of the skin, which affects 2% – 3% of the UK population. It appears as red, raised scaly patches known as plaques. Any part of the skin surface may be involved but the plaques most commonly appear on the elbows, knees and scalp. It can be itchy but is not usually painful. Nail changes are present in 50% of people and some people can develop psoriatic arthritis
Normally a skin cell matures in 21 – 28 days and during this time it travels to the surface, where it is lost in a constant invisible shedding of dead cells. In patches of psoriasis the turnover of skin cells is much faster, around 4 – 7 days, and this means that even live cells can reach the surface and accumulate with the dead cells.
This process is the same wherever it occurs on the body.
Pages: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11