DR H.C.ROBINSON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR H.C.ROBINSON / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Psoriasis. Close-up view of a patient's navel (umbilicus) affected by psoriasis. This is one of the most common skin diseases, characterised (as seen here) by thickened patches of inflamed, red skin, often covered by silvery scales. Psoriasis involves a ten-fold increase in the speed of epidermal cell growth at localised sites such as the elbows, forearms, knees and scalp. More extreme cases can affect the whole body causing considerable disability. The cause of psoriasis is generally unknown, but may be triggered by factors such as stress, skin damage and illness. It tends to run in families. Treatment depends on severity, and may include corticosteroid drugs.
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