With XTRAC® Excimer Laser (www.XTRACLaser.com) treatments, psoriasis patients can say goodbye to the red, dry patches of scaly, thickened skin they have been covering up all winter. Developed by PhotoMedex, Inc. (NASDAQ: PHMD), an innovator of medical devices, the XTRAC laser offers new hope to the 7.5 million Americans suffering from this embarrassing and socially isolating disease. Broad coverage of the XTRAC treatments for psoriasis by Medicare and all major insurance companies now provides greater access to care for psoriasis sufferers who have spent their lives covering up the embarrassing symptoms of psoriasis.
According to a report from the National Psoriasis Foundation, 73 percent of psoriasis sufferers reported feeling self-conscious about their psoriasis with, 68 percent reporting it as embarrassing and 54 percent stating their psoriasis was disfiguring. For the first time, those who suffer from these physical and emotional side effects can get relief with the XTRAC Laser. The XTRAC laser is the only clinically proven, FDA-cleared dermatology excimer laser with independent safety and quality certifications. It provides targeted phototherapy treatment for psoriasis, offering safe, effective and lasting results.
Depending on the extent and severity of the patient's psoriasis, each procedure requires only about five minutes. Noticeable improvements are usually seen within three or four treatments, with many patients seeing 75 percent or more improvement in as few as six to 10 treatments and average remission periods lasting 4-6 months, often longer. The laser is effective even in areas that are difficult to treat, such as elbows, knees and the scalp. XTRAC Laser treatments have been successful with psoriasis that has spread across as much as 20 percent of body surface area.
While the ultraviolet rays of the sun can help some psoriasis patients, summer comes with its own set of challenges for others. Here are a few tips for caring for psoriasis during the summer from Dr. Bruce Katz, director of the Juva Skin and Laser Center in New York City.
- Limit exposure to sunlight: Although UVB light is good for psoriasis, some psoriasis medications make skin more sensitive to light and is more susceptible to sunburns, which may cause psoriasis to flare up.
- Stay cool: As summer heats up, so does your body, causing you to sweat more. For psoriasis patients, sweating irritates psoriasis lesions.
- Wear light clothing: Cotton clothing will irritate the skin less than synthetic materials. This not only keeps itching at a minimum, but also keeps your body cooler, therefore creating less perspiration.
- Swim carefully: Swimming in pools with chlorine can irritate and dry out psoriasis lesions. If you can, swimming in ocean water is beneficial for psoriasis patients. Rinse off immediately and apply moisturizer after swimming in either type of water.
"Patients can avoid dealing with a lot of these challenges by starting the XTRAC laser treatments now," said Dr. Katz. "Not only will patients be able to feel comfortable wearing summer apparel like shorts and bathing suits, they won't have to worry about dealing with flare-ups all summer long."
What makes the XTRAC laser so important in relieving psoriasis is that it avoids the often dangerous consequences of other treatment approaches, such as topical steroids, full-body UVB exposure, systemic medications or biologics. Those techniques may produce a range of effects, from premature aging of healthy skin to the risk of malignancies and tuberculosis. The safe and effective XTRAC has not been associated with any of those kinds of side effects, because the XTRAC excimer laser uses a precisely focused beam of ultraviolet light only on the affected skin area, avoiding exposure to healthy skin.