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Guttate Psoriasis - Symptoms and Treatment

Guttate Psoriasis is an inherited skin condition characterized by small round lesions and often occurring after a streptococcal infection. It is the second most common form of psoriasis, which is characterized by small, pink or red drops on the skin. The word guttate is derived from the Latin word gutta, meaning drop. Usually there is a fine scale on the droplike lesion that is much finer than the scales in plaque psoriasis , which is the most common type of psoriasis. Guttate psoriasis is not contagious and may be inherited. These small drops are usually found on the chest, back, arms, or legs. Guttate Psoriasis are due to bacterial infection such as strep throat, especially in younger patients. Some cases go away without treatment in a few weeks, while many cases are more persistent and require treatment. Guttate Psoriasis can occur to any person and at any age, but is more common in people of 20 years of age, and it affects both men and women equally, but is more common in fair skinned people. In guttate psoriasis, there may be profoundly dark spots.

Guttate psoriasis is characterized by many tiny areas of psoriasis. Small, red bumps similar in size and shape to drops of water appear on most of the body. Lesions are usually concentrated around the trunk and upper arms and thighs. Face, ears and scalp are also commonly affected but the lesions may be very faint and quickly disappear in these areas. Occasionally there may be only a few scattered lesions in total. The trigger to the disease is usually a streptococcal (bacterial) infection. The eruption of the lesions on the skin usually happens about 2-3 weeks after the person has strep throat. The outbreak can go away and not reoccur. Outbreaks may also go away and come back, particularly if the person is a strep carrier. The sudden appearance of an outbreak may be the first psoriasis outbreak for some people. The rash comes on very quickly, usually within a couple of days, and may follow a streptococcal infection of the throat. It tends to affect children and young adults and has a good chance of spontaneously clearing completely. Alternatively, a person who has had plaque psoriasis for a long time may suddenly have an episode of guttate psoriasis. This type of psoriasis can also be chronic and can be triggered by infections other than those from streptococcal bacteria. For example, the chicken pox or colds can trigger the psoriasis. The diagnosis of guttate psoriasis is made by the combination of history, clinical appearance of the rash, and evidence for preceding infection.

Causes of Guttate Psoriasis

Common Causes of Guttate Psoriasis :

  • Guttate psoriasis may be inherited from your parents. Those with a family history of psoriasis are at greater risk of developing this disease.
  • In 80% of patients with guttate psoriasis, the main cause of it is a streptococcal infection.
  • Environmental factors are thought to trigger psoriasis in people who have a genetic tendency toward the disease.
  • Sometimes even mild injuries to the skin such as abrasions can trigger a psoriasis flare.
  • Certain medicines, including lithium salt and beta blockers have been reported to trigger or aggravate the disease.

Symptoms of Guttate Psoriasis

Some common Symptoms of Guttate Psoriasis :

  • Itching.
  • Skin lesion (scaly macule).
  • Usually red.
  • Shows discrete, demarcated, teardrop-shaped patches of skin .
  • Shows patchy loss of skin color.
  • Usually covered with silvery scales .

Treatment of Guttate Psoriasis

  • Topical vitamin D3 derivatives or topical retinoids are treatments that are applied to the skin.
  • The streptococcal infection can be removed by using antibiotics.
  • Medicines rich in Vitamin D are very good in treating guttate psoriasis as it helps the skin to maintain its normal PH level.
  • Topical agents including mild topical steroids, coal tar and calcipotriol are very beneficial to get relief from joints pain.
  • Psoralen and Ultraviolet light treatment (PUVA) with UVB can also ease an outbreak of the skin disease.
  • Oral or injected immunosuppressive medications, such as corticosteroids or methotrexate may be used in curing guttate psoriasis fast.








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