Lead a healthy lifestyle to prevent relapse of psoriasis symptoms

Psoriasis is a chronic non-infectious skin condition which can’t be cured. However, symptoms, particularly in mild cases, can be controlled with topical creams, ointments and medication.​

“Avoiding triggers such as stress, and leading a healthy lifestyle, can also prevent a relapse of psoriasis symptoms,” says Dr Pang Shiu Ming​, Senior Consultant at the Department of Dermatology at Singapore General Hospital (SGH), a member of the SingHealth group.

Treating psoriasis

Mild and moderate psoriasis can be treated with:

  • Coal tar preparations (cream or shampoo)
  • Dithranol cream/ointment
  • Salicylic acid ointment
  • Corticosteroids cream/ointment
  • Vitamin D-type drugs such as calcipotriol and calcitriol cream/ointment
  • Fixed dose combination of corticosteroid and calcipotriol ointment/gel
  • Fixed dose combination of corticosteroid and salicylic acid ointment

More severe psoriasis may require treatment with phototherapy using ultraviolet light 2-3 times a week for a period of several weeks to several months. Phototherapy can produce side effects such as dryness and burns on the skin, and increases the risk of skin cancer.

Persistent psoriasis may require oral and/or injectable medication as well as topical creams and ointments. Since oral and injectable medication presents risks to internal organs such as the kidney and liver as well as the immune system, this psoriasis treatment needs to be closely monitored.

“Psoriasis treatment involving oral and injectable medication and phototherapy can have side effects and the patient needs to be monitored with regular blood tests and follow-up visits,” says Dr Pang.​

Ref: S13