A lot of people don’t know the difference between psoriasis and eczema and often confuse the two when they see someone with one of the conditions. While they may appear similar, it’s important to understand the differences because they have different causes, symptoms, and treatments. Dermatologists are the medical experts who specialize in differentiating between the two.
Let’s take a look at the similarities and differences between the two conditions.
What is Psoriasis?
Psoriasis is an autoimmune condition that causes an overproduction of skin cells that build on top of each other. When the buildup becomes prominent, it appears as thick, scaly patches on the skin. Psoriasis can also be itchy, which can cause the patches to become red and inflamed.
What is Eczema?
Eczema (also called atopic dermatitis) is a skin condition that may become a long-term condition. Eczema is caused by skin hypersensitivity, causing it to become inflamed, red, and itchy.
Psoriasis and eczema have some similarities that often lead people to confuse them. Here are some things the two conditions have in common.
- Both psoriasis and eczema can cause itchiness, inflammation, and redness of the skin
- Psoriasis and eczema can become dormant and reappear later on
- Topical treatments like corticosteroid creams and systemic treatments are used to treat both conditions
- Psoriasis and eczema have triggers that can make symptoms worse and avoiding triggers can help control symptoms
- Both conditions can develop anywhere on the body but are common near the elbows and knees
- Psoriasis and eczema are not contagious
- Psoriasis and eczema do not have cures currently
There are some differences between psoriasis and eczema that make them two distinct conditions. Here are some of their differences.
- Psoriasis is an autoimmune condition while eczema is not
- Psoriasis causes dead skin to layer, which creates the thick patches while eczema does not
- Eczema patches can have pus-filled blisters
- Eczema can develop at any age and is common among babies and children. Eczema in babies is likely to subside by the time they start school. Psoriasis is very uncommon among babies and most people develop the condition between the ages of 15 and 35.
When to See a Doctor
If you or a loved one are experiencing itchiness, patches, inflammation, or redness of the skin, it’s a good idea to get it checked out by doctor. A dermatologist can examine the skin and give you the correct diagnosis as well as the right treatment to help control the condition so you can live with minimal symptoms.
If you are looking for a doctor to treat dermatology conditions for you and your family, call the Children’s Skin Center. Dr. Ana M. Duarte is an expert in pediatric and adult dermatology and treats a variety of skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis. Call (305) 669-6555 to make an appointment today. You can also request an appointment online.