psoriasis(redirected from psoriatic)
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a chronic recurrent noncontagious skin disease of man. Neuropsychic traumas and metabolic and endocrine disorders play a part in the development of psoriasis. The disease may also be viral or genetic in nature.
Eruptions may appear anywhere on the skin but generally occur on the elbows, knees, sacral region, and scalp. The disease becomes acute with the appearance of small pink-red papules covered with silvery scales that readily slough off. When the papules are scraped, the scales fall off in small particles, revealing a smooth shiny surface underneath. Further scraping produces small drops of blood. The papules rapidly enlarge, often coalescing to form plaques. This process may be circumscribed, disseminated, or generalized (erythroderma psoriaticum). When the papules and plaques reach a certain size, they stop growing and then harden, shrink, and disappear, leaving depigmented or hyperpigmented spots.
There are thus three stages of psoriasis: progressive (appearance and growth of papules), stationary (stable), and regressive (hardening and disappearance of papules). Sometimes the nail plates are affected, and their surface becomes thimble-like. In some patients, the eruptions are accompanied by swelling and tenderness of the joints (psoriasis anthropathica).
Treatment is effected by administering vitamins A, B1, B6, and B12, tranquilizers, and hormones, by means of ultraviolet radiation and application of paraffin and desquamative and resorbing ointments, and by health-resort therapy.
REFERENCEMashkilleison, L. N. Chastnaia dermatologiia. Moscow, 1965. Pages 161–216.
I. IA. SHAKHTMEISTER