Psoriatic arthritis (PsA) is inflammatory arthritis that occurs mainly in people with psoriasis. PsA is a chronic type of arthritis. It causes patches of red, raised skin, with white and silvery flakes. Psoriatic arthritis and psoriasis are autoimmune conditions. The immune system becomes confused and attacks healthy parts of the body.
According to the National Psoriasis Foundation, PsA can start at any age, but often appears between ages 30 and 50. For most people, it can begin about 10 years after psoriasis begins. The foundation also says there is no cure. However, there are a growing number of treatments to help stop the disease progression, lessen pain, and protect joints. If left untreated PsA, can cause permanent joint damage.
What are the symptoms of psoriatic arthritis?
• Sausage-like swelling of fingers and toes
• Stiffness, pain, and tenderness in one or more joints
• Reduced range of motion
• Changes to nails
According to the Arthritis Foundation, treatment for PsA focuses on:
• Stopping the progression
• Reducing inflammation
• Treating skin symptoms
• Relieving pain
• Keeping joints as mobile as possible
Living with a chronic inflammatory condition can be challenging. Early diagnosis and treatment of psoriatic arthritis is the key to staying mobile and continuing a good quality life.