Dermatologist FAQ: Psoriasis Treatments

Dermatologist FAQ: Psoriasis Treatments | St. Louis, MissouriIt can be hard to find the right psoriasis treatment or combination of psoriasis treatments. What is effective for one person may not work for another.

Therefore, it is important to understand the latest treatments. It is vital for patients to work with their doctor to identify the best treatment plan to eliminate or reduce psoriasis symptoms.

Board certified dermatologist Dr. Jamie McGinness and Jackie McGinness, FNP (Nurse Practitioner) provide advanced skin care procedures to patients in Shiloh, IL; St. Louis, MO, and surrounding communities.



Biologic medications, or biologics, are usually prescribed for moderate to severe psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis that has been unresponsive to other treatments. Biologics are administered by injection or intravenous (IV) infusion.

The biologics used in the treatment of psoriatic disease obstruct the action of a particular type of immune cell known as a T cell, or block proteins in the immune system, such as interleukins 12 and 23, alpha (TNF-alpha), or interleukin 17-A.

These cells and proteins all play a significant role in the development of psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.



Systemic treatments refer to prescription medications that are taken by mouth or by injection and work throughout the body. Systemics are usually prescribed for moderate to severe psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.

Systemic drugs work throughout the body and are typically used for people with moderate to severe psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. These drugs are also used for people who are unresponsive or unable to take topical medicines or UV light therapy.



Phototherapy (light therapy) involves exposing the skin to UV light on a routine basis under medical supervision.

Phototherapy is administered in a physician’s clinic, psoriasis clinic, or at home with a phototherapy unit. Consistency is considered to be the key to success with light therapy.


UVB Phototherapy

Ultraviolet B (UVB) is found in natural sunlight and is an effective treatment for psoriasis. UVB goes into the skin and delays the growth of the impacted skin cells. The treatment involves exposing the skin to an artificial source of UVB light for a specific duration on a routine basis.


New Oral Treatments

New oral treatments improve psoriasis symptoms by inhibiting particular molecules associated with inflammation. These treatments can be delivered as tablets taken orally, unlike biologics, which are derived from living sources and must be administered via infusion or injection.

New oral treatments are small molecule drugs that are taken by mouth. These new oral treatments target specific molecules inside immune cells, unlike earlier pills used for psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.

These treatments correct the overactive immune reactions that cause swelling in individuals with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis by adjusting the complex process of inflammation within the cell. This adjustment leads to improvement in the scaliness, redness, inflammation, and joint tenderness.



Topical treatments are applied to the skin and are usually the initial treatment recommended to a newly diagnosed individual. Topicals can be bought OTC or by prescription.

There are various effective topical treatments for psoriasis. Many of these treatments can be purchased OTC, while others are available by prescription only.

Corticosteroids, or merely “steroids,” are the most commonly used treatment for psoriasis. They are called anti-inflammatory agents as they reduce the inflammation and redness of the lesions. Synthetic vitamin D3, vitamin A, and Anthralin are also used in prescription topical treatments to manage psoriasis outbreaks.

Board certified dermatologist Dr. Jamie McGinness and Jackie McGinness, FNP (Nurse Practitioner) receive patients from Shiloh, IL; St. Louis, MO, and nearby areas for safe and proven skin care treatments.
If you would like to learn more about procedures and treatments at Metro East Dermatology & Skin Cancer Center by Board Certified Dermatologist Dr. Jamie L. McGinness please contact us here or call (618) 622-SKIN (7546)

Taking new patients in and around the greater St. Louis, Missouri and Illinois area: East St. Louis Missouri, Shiloh Illinois, Belleville, Millstadt, Saint Clair County, Madison County and more.

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