types of psoriasis

Types of psoriasis

Plaque psoriasis

plaque psoriasis is the most commonly occurring type of psoriasis, classified medically under the name psoriasis vulgaris, accounts for almost 80 to 90 percent of all psoriasis cases. The ailment starts as raised red patches (‘plaques’) which peel off in scales. These scales, usually thick and silver-colored, are frequently found on the scalp, elbows, knees and lower back. But any area of the skin is likely to be affected with this type of psoriasis.


Guttate psoriasis

This is a type of psoriasis which starts in the teenage or childhood years, with a sudden appearance of small raindrop-shaped patches (‘guttate’) on the skin, the scales being thinner than those of common psoriasis. Usually a sore throat arising from infection by streptococci can cause guttate psoriasis.


Guttate psoriasis usually spreads over large areas of the human body, but it reacts quickly to ultraviolet therapy and also to some other types of therapy. Then it can be got rid of, thereby relieving the patient of further attack from guttate psoriasis. In these cases, plaques or patches of psoriasis limited to certain areas are likely to develop at a later stage.


Skin-fold and genital psoriasis

This type of psoriasis appears in the folds of the skin (‘flexures’) and causes much pain when the affected part rubs against some other area of the skin. This pain can be so great as to disable the patient. This type of psoriasis can affect the genital region and cause pain and difficulty in contacts with a sexual partner. It is more frequent and more troublesome in occurrence with obese people.


Erythrodermic (exfoliative) psoriasis

When psoriasis spreads over the entire body it is called the erythrodermic, exfoliative or generalized psoriasis. Since a considerable area of the skin is affected, the patients will be experiencing much pain. They may also be facing problems in body temperature control, especially in very cold or very hot climates. Elderly people, especially those affected with heart failure or heart disorders are also likely to encounter problems arising from increased heartbeat rate owing to increase in blood inflow to the skin under severe inflammation. This condition is likely to cause failure of the heart.

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Pustular psoriasis

  • Localized pustular psoriasis

This is an uncommon type of psoriasis usually appearing on the palms of the patient’s hands or on the soles of their feet. It can cause much pain when they are at work with their hands or when they’re walking. The symptoms are whitish or brownish dots with reddened and inflamed skin around them, instead of the thick patches with scales. Some patients suffering from pustular psoriasis may also have the patches (plaques) of common psoriasis. For instance, specific cortisones on the palms and soles should be covered against spreading elsewhere.


  • Generalized pustular psoriasis

This type of psoriasis is very severe and the skin is affected with pustules which are not infected but are accumulated with white blood cells. The patients are likely to feel very sick and fever is frequent. This form of psoriasis can be caused by several factors such as systemic cortisones, lithium medications, infections and also intense sunburns.


Psoriasis of this type calls for immediate dermatological treatment. Luckily this type of the disorder is infrequent.


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