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Pustular Psoriasis – Types, Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatments.

Representing an unpleasant looking skin disorder, the term Psoriasis is derived from the Greek word, which literally means ‘to itch’. Thus, if your skin, particularly around the scalp, arm, elbows, legs, nails and lower back show thick, red and itchy patches covered with silvered flakes, then you might be suffering from one of the forms of psoriasis.

In some people, psoriasis might be characterized by raised bumps. These bumps or blisters are filled with pus; hence the term pustules. This condition is known as pustular psoriasis. It is an extremely rare form of psoriasis.

General Information On Pustular Psoriasis

Many experts believe that the dermatological disorder might be linked to the immune system. In normal circumstances, the immune system fights an external infection by producing special types of white blood cells (T-cells) and attacking the foreign element at the site.

However, in case of psoriasis, your immune system starts attacking itself by manufacturing more T-cells that begin to pile up on each other on the skin, creating lesions in the process. Because the rate of build-up is far greater, the dead skin cells are not shed and instead turn into an ugly eye sore.

Both psoriasis and its pustular variant are believed to be passed on through defective genes. So, it is very natural for someone to exhibit psoriasis if there is a history of the skin disorder within the family. At the same time, it is important to understand that you will not get pustular psoriasis from touching someone who is suffering from the disease.

Pustular Psoriasis Types And Symptoms

Based on the form and severity of pustules, pustular psoriasis may be classified into different categories. The generalized form of this otherwise uncommon disorder is Von Zombusch pustular psoriasis. An acute (sudden and severe) disorder, it is characterized by symptoms such as chills, fever, severe itching, rapid pulse rate, dehydration, exhaustion, weight loss, anemia and muscle weakness.

Another variant where pustules tend to form on the palms and soles of your hands and feet respectively is known as ‘Palmoplantar pustulosis’. This type of pustular psoriasis has high and low periods of occurrence in that symptoms will appear in their worst form for a period and then reduce in severity before reappearing again.

An ever more rare form is ‘Acropustulosis’ where the skin lesions appearing at the end of the fingers and toes. Acropustulosis can become quite painful to the extent that the nails become deformed, thus leading to disability.

Occurrence, Diversity And Diagnosis of Pustular Psoriasis

Generally, this skin disease is seen in adults and it affects both men as well as women in similar fashion. But in very rare cases, it might also affect children in the age group of 2-10 years. With pustular psoriasis seen in children, it is noticed that the skin problem affects boys a bit more than it does to girls.

If you suffer from pustular psoriasis, then you need to see a medical professional immediately. The doctor from his/her end will perform a few tests to diagnose the symptoms and ascertain if it is pustular psoriasis or some other dermatological disorder. As such, he or she may take your blood, urine and/or pus sample to perform diagnostic tests.

Treatments For Pustular Psoriasis

Mainly, topical therapy is prescribed as the first line of medication to treat the disorder. This includes lotions and creams such as corticosteroids, vitamin D-3 derivatives, retinoids, coal tar or anthralin, which you will need to apply on the affected regions for a period of time to diminish the effect.
In certain cases, systemic (drugs ingested orally or injected into the system) medications or phototherapy (exposing the affected region to ultraviolet light) may also prescribed by dermatologists to treat pustular psoriasis.

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