Approximately 15 percent of people with psoriasis eventually develop psoriatic arthritis. The symptoms of psoriasis and chronic joint inflammation often develop separately for psoriatic arthritis patients. In about 85 percent of psoriatic arthritis patients, symptoms of psoriasis develop before arthritis symptoms. Arthritis develops before psoriasis in up to 15 percent of psoriatic arthritis patients. Psoriasis and arthritis can develop months or years apart.
The difficulties faced by people living with the disease are often misunderstood. According to Heather Brannon, MD, About.com Guide to Skin & Beauty, "There is a common misperception that rashes are less serious than other medical conditions. Perhaps this is because few skin diseases are life threatening and therefore the impact on the person who has the rash is minimized. However, this view does not take into account the psychosocial impact of the disease experience. In the case of psoriasis, medical providers often underestimate the degree to which the disease affects the person's quality of life. The phrase "heartbreak of psoriasis" was not created in a vacuum. It is an accurate description of the life of many people with psoriasis."
About.com Health is pleased to announce a new special section -- Psoriasis: Living Without Limits -- providing information on psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis, including primers on diagnosis, symptoms and treatment options, and tips for healthy living.
- Psoriatic Arthritis Screening Quiz
- Fast Facts About Psoriatic Arthritis
- Test Your Knowledge: Psoriatic Arthritis
- 10 Things You Should Know About Psoriatic Arthritis
- How to Recognize the Signs and Symptoms of Psoriatic Arthritis
Photos © A.D.A.M.; Ken Roberts (iStockphoto); Tina Lorien (iStockphoto)