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Symptoms of Psoriasis
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- Red, raised skin patches (plaques) topped by silvery-white scales
- Frequent shedding of silvery scales
- Outbreaks most frequent on the elbows, knees, scalp, buttocks, and lower back
- Patches often occur in the same area on both sides of the body
- Patches may join together to form large affected areas on the back and chest
- May involve anywhere from a few areas to almost covering the entire body surface
- Occasional discomfort and cracking in the affected areas, especially palms, fingers, and soles
- Patches may be itchy
- Small, salmon pink, drop-like lesions on the trunk, limbs, and scalp
- Smooth, pink or red, mostly dry patches without a scaly surface
- Sensitivity to friction and sweating
- Widespread, fiery redness of the skin
- Severe itching and discomfort in the affected areas
- Possible swelling of the affected areas
Blisters containing noninfectious pus in large (generalized) or small (localized) areas of the body
- Localized: Blisters confined to local areas, usually the palms, fingers, and soles. Pustules appear in a studded pattern, turn brown, and then peel.
- Generalized: Blisters spread over large portions of the body, dry, and then recur again in repeated cycles lasting several days.
- Onycholysis—nail detachment
- Subungual hyperkeratosis—buildup underneath the nail
- Oil-drop sign—yellow-red discoloration of the nail bed
About Psoriasis. National Psoriasis Foundation website. Available at: http://www.psoriasis.org/about-psoriasis. Accessed February 25, 2013.
Psoriasis. American Academy of Dermatology website. Available at: http://www.aad.org/default.htm. Accessed February 25, 2013.
- Reviewer: Michael Woods, MD
- Review Date: 11/2013
- Update Date: 02/25/2013