Posts tagged "immune system"

Does anyone know any good treatments for psoriasis?

I have had psoriasis for 13 years now infact i got it the day after the birth of my first daughter! It has never ever gone away even after using many different treatments from the doctors! Can anyone advise on any good treatments…

There can be substantial variation between individuals in the effectiveness of specific psoriasis treatments. Because of this, dermatologists often use a trial-and-error approach to finding the most appropriate treatment for their patient. The decision to employ a particular treatment is based on the type of psoriasis, its location, extent and severity. The patient’s age, gender, quality of life, comorbidities, and attitude toward risks associated with the treatment are also taken into consideration.

Medications with the least potential for adverse reactions are preferentially employed. If the treatment goal is not achieved then therapies with greater potential toxicity may be used. Medications with significant toxicity are reserved for severe unresponsive psoriasis. This is called the psoriasis treatment ladder.[6] As a first step, medicated ointments or creams are applied to the skin. This is called topical treatment. If topical treatment fails to achieve the desired goal then the next step would be to expose the skin to ultraviolet (UV) radiation. This type of treatment is called phototherapy. The third step involves the use of medications which are ingested orally or by injection. This approach is called systemic treatment.

Over time, psoriasis can become resistant to a specific therapy. Treatments may be periodically changed to prevent resistance developing (tachyphylaxis) and to reduce the chance of adverse reactions occurring. This is called treatment rotation.

[edit] Topical treatment
Bath solutions and moisturizers help sooth affected skin and reduce the dryness which accompanies the build-up of skin on psoriasis plaques. Medicated creams and ointments applied directly onto psoriasis plaques can help reduce inflammation, remove built-up scale, reduce skin turn over, and clear affected skin of plaques. Ointment and creams containing coal tar, dithranol (anthralin), corticosteroids, vitamin D3 analogues (for example, calcipotriol), and retinoids are routinely used. The mechanism of action of each is probably different but they all help to normalise skin cell production and reduce inflammation.

The disadvantages of topical agents are variabily that they can often irritate normal skin, can be awkward to apply, cannot be used for long periods, can stain clothing or have a strong odour. As a result, it is sometimes difficult for people to maintain the regular application of these medications. Abrupt withdrawal of some topical agents, particularly corticosteroids, can cause an aggressive recurrance of the condition. This is known as a rebound of the condition. Topical lotions and creams that contain fragrances should be avoided as they will sting when applied.

Some topical agents are used in conjunction with other therapies, especially phototherapy.

[edit] Phototherapy
It has long been recognised that daily, short, nonburning exposure to sunlight helped to clear or improve psoriasis. Niels Finsen was the first physician to investigate the theraputic effects of sunlight scientifically and to use sunlight in clinical practice. This became known as phototherapy.

Sunlight contains many different wavelengths of light. It was during the early part of the 20th century that it was recognised that for psoriasis the therapeutic property of sunlight was due to the wavelengths classified as ultraviolet (UV) light.

Ultraviolet wavelengths are subdivided into UVA (380–315 nm), UVB (315–280 nm), and UVC (< 280 nm). Ultraviolet B (UVB) (315–280 nm) is absorbed by the epidermis and has a beneficial effect on psoriasis. Narrowband UVB (311 to 312 nm), is that part of the UVB spectrum that is most helpful for psoriasis. Exposure to UVB several times per week, over several weeks can help people attain a remission from psoriasis.

Ultraviolet light treatment is frequently combined with topical (coal tar, calcipotriol) or systemic treatment (retinoids) as there is a synergy in their combination. The Ingram regime, involves UVB and the application of anthralin paste. The Goeckerman regime combines coal tar ointment with UVB.

[edit] Photochemotherapy
Psoralen and ultraviolet A phototherapy (PUVA) combines the oral or topical administration of psoralen with exposure to ultraviolet A (UVA) light. Precisely how PUVA works is not known. The mechanism of action probably involves activation of psoralen by UVA light which inhibits the abnormally rapid production of the cells in psoriatic skin. There are multiple mechanisms of action associated with PUVA, including effects on the skin immune system.

Dark glasses must be worn during PUVA treatment because there is a risk of cataracts developing from exposure to sunlight. PUVA is associated with nausea, headache, fatigue, burning, and itching. Long-term treatment is associated with squamous-cell and melanoma skin cancers.

[edit] Systemic treatment
Psoriasis which is resistant to topical treatment and phototherapy is treated by medications that are taken internally by pill or injection. This is called systemic treatment. Patients undergoing systemic treatment are required to have regular blood and liver function tests because of the toxicity of the medication. Pregnancy must be avoided for the majority of these treatments. Most people experience a recurrence of psoriasis after systemic treatment is discontinued.

The three main traditional systemic treatments are the immunosupressant drugs methotrexate and ciclosporin, and retinoids, which are synthetic forms of vitamin A. Other additional drugs, not specifically licensed for psoriasis, have been found to be effective. These include the antimetabolite tioguanine, the cytotoxic agent hydroxyurea, sulfasalazine, the immunosupressants mycophenolate mofetil, azathioprine and oral tacrolimus. These have all been used effectively to treat psoriasis when other treatments have failed. Although not licensed in many other countries fumaric acid esters have also been used to treat severe psoriasis in Germany for over 20 years.

Biologics are manufactured proteins that interrupt the immune process involved in psoriasis. Unlike generalised immunosuppressant therapies such as methotrexate, biologics focus on specific aspects of the immune function leading to psoriasis. These drugs are relatively new, and their long-term impact on immune function is unknown. They are very expensive and only suitable for very few patients with psoriasis.

[edit] Alternative Therapy
Antibiotics are not indicated in routine treatment of psoriasis. However, antibiotics may be employed when an infection, such as that caused by the bacteria Streptococcus, triggers an outbreak of psoriasis, as in certain cases of guttate psoriasis.
Climatotherapy involves the notion that some diseases can be successfully treated by living in particular climate. Several psoriasis clinics are located throughout the world based on this idea. The Dead Sea is one of the most popular locations for this type of treatment.
In Turkey, doctor fish which live in the outdoor pools of spas, are encouraged to feed on the psoriatic skin of people with psoriasis. The fish only consume the affected areas of the skin. The outdoor location of the spa may also have a beneficial effect. This treatment can provide temporary relief of symptoms. A revisit to the spas every few months is often required.
Some people subscribe to the view that psoriasis can be effectively managed through a healthy lifestyle. This view is based on anecdote, and has not been subjected to formal scientific evaluation. Nevertheless, some people report that minimizing stress and consuming a healthy diet, combined with rest, sunshine and swimming in saltwater keep lesions to a minimum. This type of “lifestyle” treatment is suggested as a long-term management strategy, rather than an initial treatment of severe psoriasis.
Some psoriasis patients use herbology as a holistic approach that aims to treat the underlying causes of psoriasis.
A psychological symptom management programme has been reported as being a helpful adjunct to traditional therapies in the management of psoriasis. [4]
It is possible that Epsom salt may have a positive effect in reducing the effects of psoriasis.

[edit] Historical Treatment
The history of psoriasis is littered with treatments of dubious effectiveness and high toxicity. These treatments received brief popularity at particular time periods or within certain geographical regions. The application of cat faeces to red lesions on the skin, for example, was one of the earliest topical treatments employed in ancient Egypt. Onions, sea salt and urine, goose oil and semen, wasp droppings in sycamore milk, and soup made from vipers have all been reported as being ancient treatments.

In the more recent past Fowler’s solution, which contains a poisonous and carcinogenic arsenic compound, was used by dermatologists as a treatment for psoriasis during the 18th and 19th centuries. Grenz Rays (also called ultrasoft X-rays or Bucky rays) was a popular treatment of psoriasis during the middle of the 20th century. This type of therapy was superseded by ultraviolet therapy.

All these treatments have fallen out of favour.

[edit] Future drug development
Historically, agents used to treat psoriasis were discovered by experimentation or by accident. In contrast, current novel therapeutic agents are designed from a better understanding of the immune processes involved in psoriasis and by the specific targeting of molecular mediators. Examples can be seen in the use of biologics which target T cells and TNF inhibitors. Future innovation should see the creation of additional drugs that refine the targeting of immune-mediators further.[7]

Research into antisense oligonucleotides is in its infancy but carries the potential to provide novel theraputic strategies for treating psoriasis

Find out more information about a psoriasis treatment to treat the different types.


Psoriasis?! Home remedies and OTC meds.?

I have psorasis on the bottom of my feet, my thumb, and scalp. It flares up in the winter and usually gets better in the summer. I do not have insurance right now and have been using over the counter meds to help. Does anyone have any suggestions of how they help their psorasis?

I have been using sycilic acid for my foot and vasaline has been working wonders for the drying and cracking.

I have heard that fish oil supplements that are taken daily will help. Has anyone heard of this?

The main cause of psoriasis is overreaction of the immune system. I try to eat healthy food and avoid stress as much as I can in order to prevent flare-ups.
After using number of prescription drugs I’ve turned to the natural treatments.
Now I use herbal remedies from serenaskin.com, which aim at the root of the disease – the immune system, and are steroid-free.
After about 2 weeks of using ointment and spray my skin has been cleared up and now I just continue with anti-psoriasis extract, which controls the immune system. My skin has been clear for months now.
It is the only treatment I have found that provides me complete relief when I use it as directed.

Looking for Psoriasis Treatment? Find it here.


Psoriasis treatment procedures revealed

Psoriasis is not at all a contagious ailment but it is chronic and it is believed to be skin condition that can't be cured and almost four million of Americans are suffering from it. The condition of this ailment sometimes can flare up or shrink magically which can stays for years or months. The main reason of having this problem is unknown. With the right trigger or a combination of factors, a patient can encounter unanticipated flare up. Some general triggering elements that may lead to psoriasis outbreaks are major illnesses or some kind of shock, pain, other illnesses and an excessive amount pressure.

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