Psoriasis has been around since antiquity. In fact, many people throughout history (and in the Bible) described with leprosy may have really had psoriasis. Psoriasis may also affect the joints leading to a crippling arthritis and has been associated with an increased risk for other medical conditions including type 2 diabetes and coronary artery disease.
For years, dermatologists relied on topical treatments many of which were messy and not that effective. Various forms of ultraviolet phototherapy can be beneficial for those with more widespread disease. Some systemic chemotherapy agents are also used but have a higher risk of serious side effects. We now have a whole new array of biologic treatments for psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis, which work by targeting over-active immune factors causing psoriasis. If you have been dealing with moderate to severe psoriasis, be sure to ask your dermatologist about these new treatment options.