Preparing for your appointment

You'll likely first see your family doctor or a general practitioner. In some cases, you may be referred directly to a specialist in skin diseases (dermatologist).

Here's some information to help you prepare for your appointment and to know what to expect from your doctor.

What you can do

Make a list of the following:

  • Symptoms you're experiencing, including any that may seem unrelated to the reason for which you scheduled the appointment
  • All medications, vitamins, herbs you take, including doses
  • Questions to ask your doctor

For psoriasis, some basic questions you might ask your doctor include:

  • What might be causing my signs and symptoms?
  • Do I need diagnostic tests?
  • What treatments are available, and which do you recommend for me?
  • What types of side effects can I expect?
  • Will the treatment you recommended cause a remission in my symptoms?
  • How quickly can I expect results?
  • What are the alternatives to the primary approach you're suggesting?
  • I have other medical conditions. How can I manage these conditions together?
  • What skin care routines and products do you recommend to improve my symptoms?

What to expect from your doctor

Your doctor is likely to ask you several questions, such as:

  • When did you begin having symptoms?
  • How often do you have these symptoms?
  • Have your symptoms been continuous or occasional?
  • Does anything seem to improve your symptoms?
  • What, if anything, appears to worsen your symptoms?
May 12, 2017
References
  1. Bolognia JL, et al., eds. Psoriasis. In: Dermatology. 3rd ed. Philadelphia, Penn.: Saunders Elsevier: 2012. https://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Dec. 8, 2016.
  2. Longo DL, et al., eds. Eczema, psoriasis, cutaneous infections, acne, and other common skin disorders. In: Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine. 19th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Education; 2015. http://accessmedicine.com. Accessed Dec. 8, 2016.
  3. Papadakis MA, et al., eds. Dermatologic Disorders. In: Current Medical Diagnosis & Treatment 2016. 55th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2016. http://.accessmedicine.com. Accessed Dec. 9, 2016.
  4. Psoriasis. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. http://www.niams.nih.gov/Health_Info/Psoriasis/. Accessed Dec. 9, 2016.
  5. Weigle N, et al. Psoriasis. American Family Physician. 2013;87:626.
  6. Feldman SR, et al. Epidemiology, clinical manifestations, and diagnosis of psoriasis. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Dec. 9, 2016.
  7. Over-the-counter (OTC) topicals. National Psoriasis Foundation. https://www.psoriasis.org/about-psoriasis/treatments/topicals/over-the-counter. Accessed Dec. 12, 2016.
  8. Korman N. Comorbid disease in psoriasis. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Dec. 9, 2016.
  9. Natural Medicines. Oregon grape. http://naturalmedicines.therapeuticresearch.com. Accessed Dec. 16, 2016.
  10. Picard D, et al. Increased prevalence of psoriasis in patients with coronary artery disease: Results from a case-control study. British Journal of Dermatology. 2014;171:580.
  11. Hjule K, et al. Increased prevalence of coronary artery disease in severe psoriasis and severe atopic dermatitis. American Journal of Medicine. 2015;128:1325.
  12. Natural Medicines. Fish oil. http://naturalmedicines.therapeuticresearch.com. Accessed Dec. 16, 2016.
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  14. Phototherapy. National Psoriasis Foundation. https://www.psoriasis.org/about-psoriasis/treatments/phototherapy. Accessed Dec. 12, 2016.
  15. Feldman SR, et al. Treatment of psoriasis. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Dec. 12, 2016.
  16. Honigsmann H, et al. UVB therapy (broadband and narrowband). http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Dec. 12, 2016.
  17. Zhu TH, et al. The patient's guide to psoriasis treatment. Part 4: Goeckerman therapy. Dermatology and Therapy. 2016;6:333.
  18. Managing itch. National Psoriasis Foundation. https://www.psoriasis.org/life-with-psoriasis/managing-itch. Accessed Dec. 12, 2016.
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