Monday, March 31, 2008

A possible new diagnosis for an old problem

So, I've had this patch of skin on my right wrist, just where the bone is near the surface of the skin and prods out. Well, at first it was just sort of red and puffy. Then it quickly turned to dry hard and almost scaly! I know, yucko, but these are things that are going on with me.

It all started with a dime sized patch around 3 years or so ago. I kept putting lotion on it, but it only helped relieve the dry scaly aspects, it never fully went away. As a matter of fact, the longer I have it, the larger and more intense it has gotten. It is now about the size of a half dollar! I don't often go to the doctor for things and when I do, I always forget to ask about it. For the most part, it's more unsightly than it is anything. Although at times it does seem to 'flare up' and get red and itchy and scaly more than other times when it's just sort of a callous.

While looking up some info on a psoriasis treatment, I've discovered that my symptoms fit! Here's what the National Psoriasis Foundation says psoriasis is:
Psoriasis is an immune-mediated, genetic disease manifesting in the skin and/or the joints. According to the National Institutes of Health, as many as 7.5 million Americans have psoriasis. In plaque psoriasis, the most common type, patches of skin called "lesions" become inflamed and are covered by silvery white scale. Psoriasis can be limited to a few lesions or can involve moderate to large areas of skin. The severity of psoriasis can vary from person to person; however, for most people, psoriasis tends to be mild. No one knows exactly what causes psoriasis, but it is believed to have a genetic component. Most researchers agree that the immune system is somehow mistakenly triggered, which speeds up the growth cycle of skin cells. A normal skin cell matures and falls off the body's surface in 28 to 30 days. But a psoriatic skin cell takes only three to four days to mature and move to the surface. Instead of falling off (shedding), the cells pile up and form the lesions. Psoriasis often appears between the ages of 15 and 35, but it can develop at any age. Approximately 10 percent to 15 percent of those with psoriasis get it before age 10. Some infants have psoriasis, although this is considered rare.

All the info I am reading fits my symptoms and situation, including the ages and such. It's good to get answers, at least I know what this pesky patch is now!

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