Living with Severe Psoriasis

Pat, 50, has suffered with psoriasis throughout her life. Beginning with what she thought was a bad case of dandruff on her hairline, the condition has spread across almost her entire body and worsened to the point where it’s difficult for her to stand or walk. The thick, itchy, silvery scales cover her arms, legs and torso, and often crack open and bleed. Pat says she mostly stays inside her home because people tend to back away from her in fear or disgust, worried that they might catch her condition. She says she has seen several dermatologists over the years and has tried every treatment possible to relieve her symptoms, to no avail.

“I have no life,” she says. “There are times when I just wish to God that he would just take me and get it over with, because I just can’t take it anymore.”

More than 7 million Americans and approximately 125 million people worldwide are living with psoriasis, a chronic autoimmune disease caused by overactive T-cells that attack healthy skin cells, causing them to reproduce at an abnormally rapid rate. The condition is not contagious. According to the Mayo Clinic, the exact cause of psoriasis is unknown, though several factors can increase the risk of developing the disease, such as a family history, viral and bacterial infections, stress, obesity and smoking. Common symptoms include skin redness, scaly patches, itching, cracked skin that can bleed, thickened nails and swollen joints.

The Doctors send Pat to dermatologist Dr. Sonia Batra for a consultation. Dr. Batra explains that certain lifestyle habits could be contributing to Pat’s condition, such as her smoking and poor nutrition. 

Onstage, Dr. Batra explains how she plans to work with Pat to help relieve her symptoms. Plus, The Doctors have a few surprises for Pat:

In addition to offering Pat resources to help her quit smoking, along with one year of free meals from BistroMD, The Doctors send Pat to dentist Dr. Bill Dorfman, who offers to help her regain a bright smile.

Learn more about treating psoriasis.

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