Zocdoc Answers

Medical questions & health advice by licensed doctors

"What are the potential side effects or dangers of having photo uv therapy for plaque psorasis?"

ZocdocAnswersWhat are the potential side effects or dangers of having photo uv therapy for plaque psorasis?


I have plaque psorasis on my head, on an area about the size of 2 silver dollars. I have been using cortisteroid cream for a long time but it only works to a certain degree and I am looking for a another therapy to use to help it get better. I do not want to use an autoimmune source drug to treat it and my doctor wouldn't give it to me anyway because he says my symptoms are minor. They are minor but they really inhibit my life because I itch 24 hours a day. Thanks for your help.


Psoriasis is a very problematic condition that afflicts many people throughout the world. Many of them have noticed that their lesions will seem to improve during the summer months, which led to the development of treatment modalities that sought to capture the benefit of UV exposure, which seems to decrease the creation of more thick skin and also decrease the inflammation that can accompany the psoriatic lesions. The concern, of course, is that UV exposure can cause certain types of cancer, specifically skin cancers. For that reason, it is generally not advised for those with a personal history of skin cancer, or other individuals at high risk of developing the same. Furthermore, close observation and contact with your dermatologist even after the fact will be important to make sure that you do not go on to develop concerning lesions. Please speak to your dermatologist, who will have more information specific to you on whether or not photo uv therapy is appropriate for your specific lesions. Given the fact that the topic steroids are not being effective, UV therapy might be an appropriate option, as chronic treatment with a topical steroid is obviously yielding sub-optimal results and can also thin your skin in that area significantly.

Zocdoc Answers is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.