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Only on August is Psoriasis Awareness Month; Is Your Spa Ready?

Stages of psoriasis

Posted: August 3, 2011

What is psoriasis? Psoriasis is a chronic skin condition that impacts nearly 6 million Americans. Those with psoriasis often have red patches of skin with thick, white scales commonly on the elbows, knees and scalp. Aside from the way it looks, psoriasis is often itchy, irritating and messy, including lots of flaky, shedding skin.

With psoriasis, some part of the skin’s immune system is overactive, speeding up the skin’s metabolism. Normal skin renews itself every 60 days; psoriatic skin only takes nine days.

Chicago-area dermatologist and skin care authority, Amy Forman Taub, MD, is the medical director of Advanced Dermatology, founder of, and assistant clinical professor, Northwestern University Medical School, department of dermatology. Taub has treated hundreds of cases of psoriasis, all with patience and persistence, and has found several treatment options that offer relief and a better quality of life for psoriasis sufferers.

Dr. Taub tells exclusively about possible psoriasis treatments that are currently in the works.

Awaiting U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval, new biologic agents are being investigated at a very rapid pace. New receptor molecules have been identified as targets (called IL-23 receptors) that may be even more specific than the agents that are known about today. The older biologics have undergone many years of study, and the dermatologic community is finally feeling more confident about the long-term safety of these agents as a result of this data. In fact, there may even be some negative consequences of not treating psoriasis. More data is pointing to the fact that having unchecked psoriasis could lead to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, leading many dermatologists to push more toward treatment as being more conservative.