Plaque Psoriasis Vs Psoriasis: Explained in Detail

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Plaque Psoriasis Vs Psoriasis: Plaque psoriasis is a sort of psoriasis, not a unique disease. It is the most widespread kind, affecting up to 80% of psoriasis patients, and appears as raised, red patches with silvery scales, most commonly on the elbows, knees, and scalp. Psoriasis is divided into numerous varieties, each with its unique appearance and distribution, such as guttate psoriasis with little red spots or pustular psoriasis with white pustules. To grasp their relationship, consider plaque psoriasis as a subset of the larger, more complex skin disorder known as psoriasis.

Plaque Psoriasis

  • The most common type of psoriasis, affecting about 80% of people with the condition.
  • Appears as thick, raised, red patches covered in silvery-white scales.
  • Commonly affects elbows, knees, scalp, lower back, but can appear anywhere.
  • May itch, burn, or feel tender.
  • Cycles between flares and periods of remission.


  • An autoimmune disease that causes rapid skin cell growth, leading to the formation of plaques or other lesions.
  • Comes in several forms, with plaque psoriasis being the most common.
  • Can affect any part of the body, including the skin, nails, and joints.
  • Symptoms vary depending on the type, but often include red, scaly patches, itching, burning, and joint pain.
  • No cure exists, but treatments can manage symptoms and improve quality of life.

Difference Between Plaque Psoriasis and Psoriasis

Psoriasis is an umbrella term encompassing several variants, with plaque psoriasis being the most common form. While they share core features, some key differences set them apart.



Plaque Psoriasis


Group of chronic autoimmune skin disorders

Most common form of psoriasis characterized by raised plaques

Clinical Presentation

Includes various types (plaque, guttate, pustular, inverse, etc.)

Specifically presents as raised, well-defined plaques covered with silvery scales


Encompasses various subtypes, not all as prevalent as plaque psoriasis

Most common form, accounting for a significant majority of psoriasis cases

Affected Areas

Can affect scalp, nails, joints, etc.

Typically affects extensor surfaces (elbows, knees, scalp)


Severity varies from mild to severe

May cover a large surface area of the body when severe

Lesion Characteristics

Lesions may vary in appearance

Well-defined, raised lesions covered with silvery-white scales


Various triggers including stress, infections, medications

May be triggered by similar factors as other types of psoriasis

Treatment Approaches

Tailored to specific subtype (topical creams, phototherapy, systemic medications)

Often treated with a combination of topical treatments, systemic medications, and lifestyle modifications

Association with Psoriatic Arthritis

Psoriatic arthritis is associated with psoriasis

A subtype that may be more commonly associated with psoriatic arthritis

Research and Drug Development

Research encompasses various subtypes

Often serves as a focus for research and development of new treatments

Genetic Predisposition

Genetic component, family history may increase risk

Genetic component, individuals with a family history may be more prone

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What is Plaque Psoriasis?

Plaque psoriasis is the most widespread kind of psoriasis, affecting around 80% of those who have it. It has elevated, crimson spots that are coated in silvery-white scales. These spots can be irritating and unpleasant, as well as cracking and bleeding. Plaque psoriasis can flare up and go into remission; there is no cure, but there are several therapies to control the symptoms.

Key Features of Plaque Psoriasis:

  • Lesion appearance: Thick, raised, red patches covered in silvery scales. Edges are sharply defined. Size can vary, but often form large, coalescing plaques.
  • Location: Elbows, knees, scalp, lower back, buttocks, and genitals are common sites. Less frequent on the face and folds.
  • Development: Typically starts gradually, with small patches that enlarge over time. Can be triggered by stress, infections, or certain medications.
  • Treatment: Topical steroids, phototherapy, systemic medications, and biologics are used depending on severity and extent.

Causes of Plaque Psoriasis:

  • Psoriasis is an autoimmune condition, which means that your immune system inaccurately assaults healthy skin cells, causing them to develop too rapidly and form thick patches.
  • Genetics: Family history is important, with a larger risk if a close relative has psoriasis.
  • Environmental Triggers: Certain variables, including stress, infections, skin injuries, certain drugs, weather changes, and alcohol or tobacco usage, can cause flare-ups.

Symptoms of Plaque Psoriasis:

  • Plaque psoriasis appears as thick, reddish patches coated with silvery-white scales.
  • Location: It is most commonly found on the elbows, knees, scalp, and lower back, although it can occur anywhere.
  • Itching and Burning: Plaques can be itchy and unpleasant at times.
  • Psoriasis can cause pitting, discolouration, and thickness of the nails.
  • Psoriatic arthritis is a kind of joint discomfort and swelling that some patients with plaque psoriasis suffer.

What is Psoriasis?

Psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune skin illness that promotes fast skin cell development, resulting in plaques that are thick, red, and scaly. It can occur anywhere on the body, but most usually on the elbows, knees, scalp, and lower back. Psoriasis is not communicable and has no established cause, however it is assumed to be caused by a mix of hereditary and environmental factors.

Key Features of Psoriasis:

  • Chronic inflammatory skin disease: Psoriasis is an autoimmune condition causing accelerated skin cell growth, leading to thickened plaques and inflammation.
  • Varied presentation: While plaque psoriasis dominates, other forms exist, like guttate psoriasis (small red teardrop-shaped lesions), pustular psoriasis (white pustules on red patches), and inverse psoriasis (smooth red patches in skin folds).
  • Joint involvement: In some cases, psoriatic arthritis can develop alongside skin symptoms, causing joint pain, swelling, and stiffness.
  • Psychological impact: Psoriasis can significantly impact mental health, causing anxiety, depression, and social stigmatisation. Effective treatment and support are crucial.

Causes of Psoriasis:

  • The precise cause of psoriasis is unknown, although it is thought to be a complicated combination of genetics, the immune system, and environmental factors.
  • An overactive immune system, like plaque psoriasis, causes rapid proliferation of skin cells, resulting in the distinctive symptoms.
  • A family history of psoriasis considerably raises the likelihood of acquiring it.

Symptoms of Psoriasis:

  • Psoriasis can show in a variety of ways, but all share the presence of red, scaly patches on the skin.
  • Patches can form on elbows, knees, scalp, lower back, nails, genitals, and other locations depending on the kind of psoriasis.
  • Itching and burning sensations are prevalent, although their degree varies.
  • Psoriatic arthritis, which causes joint pain, swelling, and stiffness, can occur in certain people.
  • There are various varieties of psoriasis, each with its own appearance and symptoms. Guttate psoriasis, pustular psoriasis, and inverse psoriasis are a few examples.

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Similarities Between Plaque Psoriasis and Psoriasis

  • Autoimmune Characteristics: Psoriasis and plaque psoriasis are both autoimmune diseases in which the immune system assaults healthy skin cells.
  • Nature of the Chronic: Both illnesses are chronic and can last a lifetime, with symptoms varying over time.
  • Inflammatory Reaction: Both psoriasis and plaque psoriasis are characterised by inflammation, which causes redness, swelling, and pain.
  • Predisposition to Genetic Disease: Both disorders have a hereditary component, and those who have a family history of psoriasis may be more likely to acquire it.
  • Impact on Life Quality: Because of physical discomfort, mental stress, and social shame, both psoriasis and plaque psoriasis can have a major impact on quality of life.

While "psoriasis" is an umbrella term for a variety of skin disorders, "plaque psoriasis" is the most frequent and recognisable kind. Consider elevated, inflammatory spots on your elbows, knees, scalp, or lower back, typically with silvery-white scales. Plaque psoriasis affects up to 80% of people with this inflammatory illness. However, the name "psoriasis" embraces a larger variety of manifestations, such as guttate psoriasis with tiny, red spots or pustular psoriasis with white pustules. Understanding the distinction between plaque psoriasis and psoriasis in general is critical for correct diagnosis and efficient therapy.

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What is the difference between Plaque Psoriasis and Psoriasis?

Plaque Psoriasis is a specific type of Psoriasis, which is a chronic skin condition. While Psoriasis refers to a broad category of autoimmune skin diseases, Plaque Psoriasis is characterised by raised, red patches covered with a silvery white buildup of dead skin cells.

Are there different types of Psoriasis?

Yes, Psoriasis comes in various forms, with Plaque Psoriasis being the most common. Other types include guttate, inverse, pustular, and erythrodermic psoriasis. Each type presents unique symptoms and affects different areas of the body.

What are the common similarities between Plaque Psoriasis and Psoriasis?

Plaque Psoriasis shares common features with other types of Psoriasis, such as the autoimmune nature of the condition, genetic predisposition, and the characteristic red, inflamed skin patches. Both conditions involve an overactive immune response that speeds up the skin cell turnover process.

How do the symptoms of Plaque Psoriasis differ from general Psoriasis?

Plaque Psoriasis symptoms are specific to the formation of thick, raised plaques covered with silvery scales. General Psoriasis symptoms may vary depending on the type, involving different patterns of skin lesions, redness, and itching.

Can Psoriasis and Plaque Psoriasis be triggered by certain factors?

Yes, both Psoriasis and Plaque Psoriasis can be triggered or exacerbated by factors like stress, infections, skin injuries, and certain medications. Understanding and managing these triggers is crucial in controlling the condition.

What are the treatment options for Plaque Psoriasis and Psoriasis?

Treatment options include topical creams, phototherapy, oral medications, and biologics. The choice of treatment depends on the severity of the condition, its location, and the individual's response to specific therapies.