Psoriasis is a skin disease generally linked to the immune system of the body. The skin cells grow at a much faster rate than they should normally do because of the improper functioning of the immune system. The growth of skin cells follows a life cycle. Normally the usual period of creating new cells and appearing on outermost layer of the skin surface from deep below; and dyeing of previous cells is about 21-28 days which keeps a balance of new generated cells vs shedding off cells. In psoriasis the imbalance is created because of the unusual high production of skin cells in comparison to the shedding of cells. This process takes about 2-6 days. It is a chronic disease but non-contagious and it can appear on any part of the body but usually it is found on knees, elbows and lower back. This skin condition can appear on any age but generally shows itself around puberty and between 12 and 50 years. 15% of cases of psoriasis begin in children under 15 years of age. The general clues are psoriatic nail changes, scaling of the scalp, external auditory meatus, elbows and knees and a family history.
Penile psoriasis is a very common problem but most of the men are hesitant to discuss because it is confused with sexually transmitted disease. But it should be remembered that it is not a venereal disease. In simple terms penile psoriasis is a skin condition of male genital organ. It is very hard to recognize as skin of penis is thinner and moist in comparison to other parts of the body. Penile psoriasis defies the salient feature of appearance of scaly flakes and therefore difficult to identify.
Two main types of penile psoriasis have been identified known as inverse psoriasis and psoriasis caused by trauma. Inverse psoriasis shows papules which are red in color and is itchy whereas the second type is slightly scaly but is generally not itchy. Generally this condition appears because of trauma or injury and it can appear in a man with no sign of this disease on any other part of the body. Sometimes this area may suffer from allergic reaction because of creams etc. rather than actual psoriasis but may be confused with the condition. the most affected are is the end of the penis called as glans penis. The psoriasis can flare up in this area because of sexual intercourse. The skin of this area can be protected by using condom which will avoid contact with the skin of that area. The big downside is that it can get in the way of sexual enjoyment by causing irritation and even the appearance making the man miserable.
Penile psoriasis Treatment
Penile Psoriasis is a skin condition of the penis, the often affected area is known as glans penis which is the end of the penis. There are two major types of this skin disease which have been identified so far and the reasons associated are hereditary, immune system disfunction, trauma or injury of some kind. Interestingly skin cells go through a particular life cycle and this cycle involves a balance between growing of the call and dying of the cells. This balance is interrupted by the speedy of growth of the cell which start appearing on the outer surface of the skin producing cells in abundance on an area. The common areas of this condition showing up are elbows, knees, scalp and lower back. This process can involve itching and burning. It can appear at any age, but usually between 12 and 50 years old. There is quite a big number of children suffering from psoriasis ~15% under 15 years. When the cell are produced quickly the life cycle of cell growth is completed in 2-6 days rather than the usual time of 28 days. Very importantly this disease is not contagious and is not sexually transmitted. Usually this condition appears as small patches. The impact of this condition varies from individual to individual as it might be only some minor irritation for some and it could be a havoc for others and affecting their lifestyle in a major way. Although it a common problems but usually the man will not be discussing or visiting GP because of the social issues and also the misconception that it is sexually transmitted disease. Psoriasis being a chronic disease, the condition can back any time. There will periods of varied symptoms, sometimes severe.
Penile psoriasis is difficult to recognize and sometimes it could be the allergic reaction to soap, perfumes etc rather than the disease. The area becomes red and sometimes itchy. The most common treatment for both types of this condition is corticosteroid creams of low strength as skin of penis is very tender and fragile and stronger ointments can cause injury to the skin. Interestingly this area is quite quickly responsive to even the low strength steroids like 1% OTC hydrocortisone, however if this ineffective alone an intermittent treatment with a more potent preparation is necessary.it is best to avoid irritants. The other used steroids and creams Protopic and Elidel are also useful. Depending on the severity of the condition, sometimes strong corticosteroids are used for treatment but for very short period and under the supervision of the treating doctor. The treatment with methotrxate or a biological drug is also indicated for sever conditions. For face and flexures salicyclic acid in aqueous cream at night with a combination of hydrocortisone in the morning is usually used.
When the entire genital area is covered with psoriasis, the condition falls into the severe category and under these circumstances, systemic treatment with a pill such as methotrexate or Soriatane or even a biologic drug may be indicated.
The condition is not contagious and most people have only small patches of their body affected.
The severity of psoriasis varies greatly from person to person. For some people it is just a minor irritation, but for others it has a major impact on quality of life.
Psoriasis is a long-lasting disease (chronic) that can return at any time. You may have times when you have no symptoms of psoriasis or times when you have very mild symptoms followed by times where the symptoms are severe.
There is no cure for psoriasis but there is a range of treatments that can help improve your symptoms.