The major types of psoriasis include the following.
Plaque psoriasis is the most common type.
Nearly 90% of people with psoriasis have this type.1 Symptoms of plaque
Round or oval sores that may expand into patches.
are red and covered with loose, silvery, scaling skin.
are usually found on the elbows, knees, and trunk.
Guttate psoriasis is the second most common
type, affecting up to 10% of people who have psoriasis.1 It is also called raindrop psoriasis.
People with guttate psoriasis may have:
Many small sores the size of small drops of
Sores that develop suddenly, usually on the trunk, arms,
legs, and scalp.
Outbreaks of sores that may occur with a cold or
other upper respiratory infection. The sores also may occur after an episode of
Psoriatic arthritis occurs in 10% to 15% of
people who have psoriasis.2 Estimates vary depending on the population being studied
and the method of diagnosis. Symptoms of psoriatic arthritis include:
Joint symptoms that occur before, at the same
time, or after skin symptoms develop.
Joint symptoms in the hands
Joint and skin symptoms that are long-lasting and return
often (chronic). Symptoms can range from mild to disabling. A chronic,
low-level bacterial infection or a serious joint injury in people who have
psoriasis may trigger arthritis. The joint symptoms usually improve after skin
Inverse psoriasis includes sores that are:
Large and red and very inflamed and dry. There is
not a lot of scaling.
Commonly found in the skin folds near the
armpits, under the breasts and the buttocks, in the groin area, around the
anus, behind the ear, and on the face.
Pustular psoriasis is another type, and its
Fluid-filled (noninfectious pus) sores that
appear on the palms of the hands and soles of the feet. The skin is very
Larger affected areas of skin (plaque) or small, drop-sized
sores that may also appear on other body parts.
Flares that occur after you stop taking certain medicines
(such as oral corticosteroids) or stop using certain creams (such as
high-strength corticosteroid creams).
Erythroderma, or exfoliative psoriasis, is an
extremely rare form that may be disabling or fatal. People with erythroderma
Symptoms that affect the entire body, not just
Inflammation and redness on skin all over the body. The
skin may shed or slough off and is usually itchy and
Chills and inability to regulate body temperature.
Abel E, Lebwohl M (2008). Psoriasis. In EG Nabel, ed., ACP Medicine, section 2, chap. 3. Hamilton, ON: BC Decker.
Winchester R (2008). Psoriatic arthritis. In K Wolff et al., eds., Fitzpatrick's Dermatology in General Medicine, 7th ed., vol. 1, pp. 194–206. New York: McGraw-Hill Medical.
How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.