Guttate Psoriasis: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatments

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Guttate is one the most common type of psoriasis that is characterized by tiny red spots that are red and scaly. As painful and uncomfortable as it is, guttate psoriasis is not as prevalent as plaque psoriasis as only 1 out of 10 people with psoriasis have guttate psoriasis.

Just like every other form of psoriasis, guttate psoriasis is the result of your immune system attacking and destroying its own cells. Guttate psoriasis is a lifelong condition that is characterized by remissions and recurrences just like all types of psoriasis.

Guttate Psoriasis Symptoms

As aforementioned, guttate psoriasis causes patches of tiny, red spots, but these are considerably less thick in nature than plaque psoriasis blisters.

 These small spots are, however, flaky scales just like plaque psoriasis. Most commonly affected areas include the legs, arms, chest, and stomach.

Guttate Psoriasis Causes and Triggers

Guttate psoriasis is believed to be genetic, but it often gets triggered by certain environmental factors. Typically, what triggers a guttate psoriasis flare-up is a bacterial infection that can be an infection as commonplace as strep throat. Some other factors that may trigger guttate psoriasis are:

  • Too much stress
  • Tonsillitis
  • Injuries to the skin like cuts and burns
  • Certain medications like beta blockers
  • An upper respiratory infection

Diagnosing Guttate Psoriasis

A doctor can conclusively determine whether you have guttate psoriasis by listening to your symptoms, examining your skin, and taking a look at your family and medical history. Sometimes, doctors may need additional testing for diagnosis such as taking a blood sample or in extreme cases, a skin biopsy.

Guttate Psoriasis Treatment

Guttate psoriasis blisters usually go away on their own within a couple of weeks or month. However, since the spots are often itchy and do not have the best appearance, there are many treatment options to manage guttate psoriasis and improve the appearance of your skin.

– There are cortisone creams that can be applied to the affected areas to alleviate inflammation and itching. Medicated moisturizers, like Dovonex, may help with dryness and itching.

Coal tar and dandruff shampoos may be used to treat guttate psoriasis that affects the scalp. Coal tar creams also soothe blisters on other areas of the body.

– There are also topical and oral medications that contain Vitamin A or Vitamin D to treat guttate psoriasis. Phototherapy, also known as UV light therapy, is also a very effective guttate psoriasis treatment.

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