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I have psoriasis and rhumatoid arthritis and really need help have tried everything and nothing helps

By Anonymous May 24, 2011 - 10:01am
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I started psoriasis after radiation for breast cancer 10 years ago and have been fighting with it ever since and the rhumatoid arthritis that goes with is is dibilitating. I went to a clinical trial and was told I could take this drug which could cause cancer as a side effect or try and qualify for the needles which cost $3000.00 a shot and as I am allergic to all drugs would not even consider it. I have used all the cortozone creams which has made the skin so thin even tried the skin zinc.Have also gone to a homopathic lady with no results and tried accupunture as well. I now have been taking honey and cinnamon which has cleared my legs up to my knees but my torso,head and arms are really bad. I am wondering if all my hormones were in balance if I might have some relief would appreciate any help at all Thanks

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HERWriter Guide

Hi Anonymous

Thanks so much for your post. I'm sorry you are having so much trouble with psoriasis - I know that so many of our readers deal with this trying condition.

I know you mentioned that you have tried pretty much everything but at the risk of repeating what you already may know, here are the treatment options that EmpowHER offers:

Treatment is based on:

■The severity of the disease
■The extent and location of the areas involved
■Responsiveness to the treatment

Topical Treatment
Many patients respond very well to treatments applied directly to the skin. Topical treatments include:

■Corticosteroid creams and ointments (most common treatment)
■Synthetic forms of vitamin D and retinoids (calcipotriene ointment 0.005)
■Retinoids (tazarotene gel 0.05 and 0.1%)
■Coal tar preparations
■Bath solutions and moisturizers
■Tacrolimus and pimecrolimus (especially for inverse psoriasis)

Photo (Light) Therapy
If psoriasis covers more than 30% of the body it is difficult to treat with topical medications alone. Daily, short, nonburning exposure to sunlight clears or improves psoriasis in many people. Sunlight is often included among initial treatments. A more controlled form of artificial light treatment (UVB phototherapy) is often used in more widespread cases. Althernatively, psoriasis can be treated with ultraviolet A (UVA light) and psoralen. Psoralen is an oral or topical medication that makes the body more sensitive to light. This treatment is known as PUVA.

Phototherapy can be very effective in controlling psoriasis but it requires frequent treatments. It may cause side effects such as nausea, headache, fatigue, burning, and itching. Both UVB and PUVA may increase the person's risk for squamous cell and, possibly, melanoma skin cancers . It is unclear whether UVB increases the risk of skin cancer.

Systemic Treatment
For more severe types of psoriasis, doctors may prescribe a number of other powerful medications, which can be effective, but are associated with more serious side effects. These include:

■Methotrexate—should not be taken by pregnant women, women planning to become pregnant, or by their male partners.
■Cyclosporine—suppresses the immune system to slow the turnover of skin cells.
■Hydroxyurea—less toxic than methotrexate or cyclosporine, but may be less effective
■Systemic retinoids—Compounds with vitamin A-like properties taken internally (such as methotrexate) may be prescribed in severe cases. Retinoids can cause birth defects, and women must diligently protect themselves from pregnancy for several years after completing treatment. Systemic retinoids are often combined with phototherapy for increased effectiveness and for their property of being protective against squamous skin cancer.

Newer systemic immunomodulators, or biologicals—so called because they affect some aspect of the aspect of the body’s natural immune response—may also be quite effective. These treatments are generally the most expensive, though, and some can cause serious toxicity when given systemically (intravenously or by injection). Topical preparations of immunomodulators are currently being tested and seem to have benefits. Other drugs called thiazolidinediones may show promise as future treatments for psoriasis, but are not currently recommended.

You can read lots more here on our Psoriasis page here: http://www.empowher.com/condition/psoriasis

as well as articles and experiences from other women.

Anon, when you say you are allergic to "all drugs" do you literally mean everything?

Have you tried the non-drug options talked about above, like phototherapy? And what therapies are you taking for your RA?

I am also wondering why the honey and cinnamon treatment is working for some parts of your body and others...has this been discussed by your homeopathic health care provider?

Also - feel free to get your hormone levels checked if you feel this may be contributing to your conditions.

I hope to hear back from you!

May 24, 2011 - 11:22am
(reply to Susan Cody)

Thanks so much for all the information I have done phototherapy and that put me in the hospital with a major allergic reaction and yes all drugs and even the pain killers. When they started a IV drip in the hospital had to do a benyln drip as well to counter the antibiotic. Have used all the creams as well. Will ask my doctor about this Stelara if we have it in Canada. I have gone to about every website on this disease and researched it but still no help. Thanks Joan

May 27, 2011 - 12:01pm
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