The symptoms of psoriasis vary depending upon the type of psoriasis.
Let’s look at psoriasis signs and symptoms for each type.
According to an article published by the National Centre for Biotechnology Information, about 80% to 90% of patients with psoriasis suffer from this type of psoriasis. Psoriasis symptoms for this type are as listed below:
- Patches of thick, raised skin known as plaque
- A dry, thin and silvery-white coating (scales) covers some plaque
- Plaque of different sizes
- Smaller plaque joining together to form larger plaque
It is also known as psoriasis vulgaris and is commonly seen on the scalp, elbows, knees and lower back.
In this type of psoriasis, psoriasis symptoms appear quite suddenly as tiny bumps on the skin. The bumps seem to be:
- Scaly and small
- Salmon-coloured to pink
- Mostly temporary
The symptoms of psoriasis in this type are generally seen on the torso, arms and legs. In some cases, the bumps can also develop on the scalp, face and ears.
The primary psoriasis symptom for this type involves pus-filled bumps. While the bumps may look like an infection, the skin is not infected. This is because the bumps don’t contain bacteria or any substances that can cause an infection. Pustular psoriasis symptoms include:
- Swollen, red skin dotted with pus-filled bumps
- Extremely painful or sore skin
- Brown dots (or scales) which appear when the pus-filled bumps dry
- Pustular psoriasis symptoms usually appear on the hands and feet.
Inverse psoriasis symptoms generally include the following:
- Smooth, red patches of skin that appears raw
- Minimal, if any, silvery-white coating (scales)
- Painful or sore skin
Inverse psoriasis signs and symptoms are most likely to be seen in areas where the skin touches skin, such as the armpits, genitals, creases of the buttocks and other folds of the skin.
This type of psoriasis is serious and can be life-threatening. Erythrodermic psoriasis symptoms are as follows:
- Redness and scaling almost all over the body
- Copious shedding of scales
- Fever, chills and the person looks extremely ill
- A rapid pulse, muscle weakness and severe itch
People with this type of psoriasis should seek immediate medical attention.
While psoriasis generally affects the skin, it can also affect other parts of the body, such as the nails. The symptoms of psoriasis when it affects the nails are as mentioned below:
- Small dents in your nails (nail pits)
- Rough, crumbling nails
- Yellow, white or brown discoloration under one or more nails
- Build-up of skin cells under one or more nails, which lifts up the nail
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, about half the people with plaque psoriasis see signs and symptoms of psoriasis on their fingernails at some point.
Mild scalp psoriasis symptoms may include only slight, fine scaling. Moderate to severe scalp psoriasis symptoms include:
- Silvery-white scales
- Red, scaly, bumpy patches
- Dandruff-like flaking
- Dry scalp
- Soreness or burning
- Temporary hair loss (in some cases)
Scalp psoriasis symptoms can appear as a single patch or several patches and can affect your entire scalp. It can also spread to the back of your neck, forehead, or behind and inside your ears.
When psoriasis affects the joints of the body, it can cause a condition known as psoriatic arthritis. Symptoms of psoriasis in case of psoriatic arthritis include:
- A tender and swollen joint, especially in toes or fingers
- Heel pain
- Swelling on the back of your leg, just above your heel
- Joint stiffness in the morning that fades during the day
Psoriatic arthritis commonly develops in people who experience symptoms of psoriasis for a very long. It is important to seek early medical attention for psoriatic arthritis. If allowed to progress, psoriatic arthritis can become disabling.
It is a type of psoriasis that affects the palms of the hands and the soles of the feet. Palmoplantar psoriasis symptoms can be seen as follows in the affected areas of the hands and soles:
- Red, thickened skin
- Silvery scales
- Dry, cracked skin
- A burning, itchy sensation
- Thickened, ridged nails
- Pits or depressions in nails
- Stiff, swollen joints
Psoriasis treatment must be targeted to deal with all of the aforementioned emotional affections as well.
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