Psoriasis is a significant problem for dermatologists in the US. Over 7 million people suffer from this chronic skin condition and it affects both women and men of all ages.
Recent research indicates that Psoriasis may be caused by liver dysfunction and may also be related to immune system functions. Generally patches of inflamed red skin called plaques characterize symptoms. While these are the most visible symptoms Psoriasis causes significant discomfort due to pain, itching, limited joint mobility and depending on the affected area, it may also cause emotional distress.
Human blood contains T-cells, which normally protect the body against disease. Research indicates that in Psoriasis victims these T-cells are over-active and become responsible for excessive skin cell reproduction resulting in the plaques.
Symptomatic treatment of this disease results in destroying the excessive skin production caused by malfunctioning T-Cells. This is done by use of Ultra Violet light, which can destroy these excessive growths. The process of destroying these skin cells is called Apoptosis and is included by many doctors as a treatment option.
Many alternative therapies are also available and widely publicized. These include the use of Dead Sea salts and soaps with high salt content to purging liver treatments. None of these have been proven conclusively effective in removing the symptoms entirely. Because of the chronic nature of this condition and its often painful symptoms, patients often tire of non medical intervention and seek help from doctors.
Phototherapy treatments for Psoriasis can be done using UVB and UVA light. For most mild to moderate cases doctors generally elect to use UVB Narrow Band Spectrum treatments. Current knowledge of these treatments suggests that these Narrow Band UVB (NBUVB) treatments have better results than Broad Band treatment options.
When UVA light is used, doctors include topical and oral administration of a drug called Psoralen. This drug improves skin sensitivity to UVA light and improves the effectiveness of the treatments. While the disease may not be entirely curable, such treatments provide significant symptomatic relief to patients suffering from Psoriasis.