Psoriasis Causes

Written by Kimberly Clark
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No one really knows what causes psoriasis, but it is now known that it is much more than a skin disease. It is widely believed that psoriasis is caused by an overactive immune system. Under normal circumstances, the body uses white blood cells to heal itself and to fight infections.

What Happens In Psoriasis Sufferers?

These cells release antibodies directly to the site of injury or infection to clot blood, repair damage, and prevent further infection; inflammation is a direct result of this process. For some yet to be discovered reason, there is an overproduction of a specific type of white blood cell, namely the T-cell, in people diagnosed with psoriasis. The primary function of the T-cell is to defend the body from foreign invaders.

In psoriasis suffers, the T-cells turn the on the body and attack its own tissue, essentially destroying the normal skin cells. Clinical studies have discovered large amounts of T-cells in the psoriatic lesions. Other factors that can contribute to the onset of psoriasis are genetics, stress, bacterial and viral infections (such as tonsillitis and strep throat), physical injury, and hormonal imbalances.

Chemical and allergic reactions to medications used to heal other afflictions have also been linked to psoriasis outbreaks. These include lithium, beta-blockers, oral steroids and drugs used to treat malaria. Additionally, smoking in women and consumption of alcohol in men are considered contributing factors to psoriasis flare-ups.


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