Psoriasis in the elderly

Aerlyn G. Dawn, Marianne Edwards Dawn, Gil Yosipovitch

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Psoriasis is one of the most common chronic skin diseases, and unprecedented increases in the elderly population will make diagnosis and management of geriatric psoriasis increasingly important. Management of psoriasis in the elderly requires consideration of several important factors. Many commonly prescribed drugs can precipitate psoriasis or aggravate pre-existing psoriasis. In addition, elderly patients are at increased risk of adverse drug reactions due to polypharmacy, adverse drug-drug interactions, adverse drug-disease interactions, incorrect use of medication and concomitant comorbidities. Psoriasis is a highly variable disease that requires individualized treatment. The major classes of topical medications include topical corticosteroids, coal tar preparations, calcipotriol, tazarotene and salicylic acid. Phototherapy, including narrowband ultraviolet B, photochemotherapy, psoralen ultraviolet A and excimer laser treatment, can be effective in properly selected patients. Systemic therapy for psoriasis in the elderly should be reserved for severe, extensive cases that have failed to respond to topical treatment, and may include methotrexate, systemic retinoids and immunotherapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)611-623
Number of pages13
JournalAging Health
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Calcipotriol
  • Carticosteroids
  • Coal tar
  • Compliance
  • Drug-induced psoriasis
  • Elderly
  • Immunotherapy
  • Methotrexate
  • Phototherapy
  • Psoriasis
  • Topical

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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