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Types of Psoriasis (cont.)

Pustular Psoriasis

Pustular psoriasis is an uncommon form of psoriasis. People with pustular psoriasis have clearly defined, raised bumps on the skin that are filled with pus (pustules). The skin under and around these bumps is reddish. Pustular psoriasis may cause large portions of the skin to redden. Pustular psoriasis can occur alone or with plaque-type psoriasis.

Picture of pustular psoriasis
Picture of pustular psoriasis. Image courtesy of Hon Pak, MD.

Picture of pustular psoriasis.
Picture of pustular psoriasis. Image courtesy of Hon Pak, MD.

Pustular psoriasis is classified into one of several types, depending on the symptoms. The lesions may be come on suddenly (acute) or be long-term (chronic), or somewhere in between (subacute). Extensive pustular psoriasis (von Zumbush) often has systemic effects producing acute symptoms like fever, chills, nausea, headache, and joint pain. Pustular psoriasis can be so severe that it requires hospitalization. Pustular psoriasis of the palms and soles is usually chronic and has red patches studded with white to yellow pustules. A ring-shaped (annular, or circinate) type also exists. It is usually subacute or chronic, and people with this type do not usually have symptoms aside from the skin symptoms. Acrodermatitis continua is a rare type of pustular psoriasis that involves the fingertips. Fingernails may accumulate lakes of pus over the nail bed. The lesions may be very painful and result in permanent nail destruction.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/14/2016

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