In more than two-thirds of patients psoriasis affects the scalp (medical term: psoriasis capitis) and forehead. Thus, these sites are by far the most affected areas of the body by psoriasis – regardless of age, gender or stage of disease. Find out more about psoriasis capitis here.
Psoriasis – scalp: what symptoms occur?
Since the inflammatory focus of psoriasis on the head often beyond the hairline and reach rich, the psoriasis is often visible in the face. This is doubly unpleasant for those affected because these places are difficult to hide. A typical region where psoriasis of the scalp becomes visible, for example, is the forehead near the hairline. The foci are reddish, dandruff and often cause an unpleasant itching. In some cases, psoriasis on the head can also lead to (usually temporary) hair loss.
These symptoms make psoriasis on the scalp a disease that can greatly affect sufferers in their well-being and in their confidence – especially if the psoriasis on the face is visible. For this reason alone, psoriasis on the head should be treated as soon as possible after its first appearance. If treatment for psoriasis on the head or psoriasis capitis does not take place over a longer period of time, the risk of psoriasis-related hair loss also increases. In addition, psoriasis of the scalp is sometimes associated with psoriasis in the ear or ear.
Psoriasis – scalp: How is the diagnosis made?
For a first suspected psoriasis on the head, the doctor may already have a look at the affected areas – especially if the patient is already being treated for psoriasis. Nevertheless, it is important to differentiate the psoriasis of the scalp against other eczema, fungal diseases, lichen planus, lupus erythematosus and other diseases.
Psoriasis – Scalp: Treatment
The treatment of psoriasis of the scalp aims to normalize the over-scaling scalp and stop the inflammation. In order to achieve this goal, various preparations are available, which are applied to the scalp.
Before these are used, however, it is important to loosen the scales, so that the active ingredients can even develop their effect. This task is fulfilled by saliva-free shampoos or – for particularly stubborn dandruff – special creams or solutions.
Subsequently, preparations are used which combat the symptoms of psoriasis of the head. These include various shampoos, foams and solutions that contain cortisone and / or vitamin D3 derivatives (e.g., calcipotriol or tacalcitol) and are best alcohol free. Preparations containing vitamin D3 derivatives or a combination of vitamin D3 derivatives with cortisone are also suitable for a longer period of use of up to one year. On the other hand, pure cortisone preparations are not suitable for permanent external use of psoriasis capitis.
Many patients also evaluate so-called UV light combs as positive in scalp psoriasis. With its help, psoriasis-affected areas of the scalp can be specifically irradiated with UV light. Previously, it is also necessary to remove the scales from the scalp.
If these externally applied (topical) measures can not be used satisfactorily, physicians often resort to internal (systemic) medication for psoriasis on the scalp. These correspond to the internal drug treatment of psoriasis. scalpSymptoms often respond well.