Fine in atopic dermatitis or dermatophytosis, branny in seb derm, crusted in PF, thicker in psoriasis. Skin hot to touch
Case presentation in Dermatology erythrodermic psoriasis
5thYear Medical Student
• Ahmad is 50 years old male came to the on call dermatologist with a 3 day
history of feeling generally unwell and redness of all skin associated with
desquamation scaling.The condition started in his extremities and face and then
rapidly spread over her whole body.
• He also complains of swelling of his arms and legs with severe pruritus
• 5 years before he came to the hospital with well circumscribed erythematous
plaques with silver scales over the elbows and a scaly scalp.
• He clinically diagnosed with plaque psoriasis and had been treated with
topical corticosteroids and moisturizing creams.
• P . M . H : Tension headache, No other chronic illness
• P . S . H : negative
• Drug history : he takes NSAID
• Social history : Patient is married, lives in aVilla, in Riyadh with his
wife. Patient originally from Jeddah but moved to Riyadh 10 years
ago. He is a Bank Manger. He denies any history of smoking, alcohol
use or IV drugs and there is no history of recent travel.
• Blood transfusion : negative .
• Family hx. : There is a family history of psoriasis
• Allergy hx. : no known allergy to food or drugs.
• Constitutional– denies fevers or chills; decreased appetite and weight loss .
• Cardiovascular system: denies chest pains, palpitations, syncope, orthopnea, PND, Edema.
• Respiratory system : denies cough and wheezing and shortness of breath .
• Gastrointestinal tract: No nausea, vomiting, constipation or diarrhea.
• HEENT: denies decreased hearing ,blurring, diplopia, irritation, discharge, vision loss, eye pain,
photophobia, ear pain or discharge, tinnitus, nasal obstruction or discharge, nosebleeds, sore
throat, hoarseness, dysphagia
• Urogenital system : denies incontinence, dysuria, hematuria, urinary frequency
• Nervous system : denies weakness , transient paralysis, paresthesia, seizures, syncope,
• Musculoskeletal system :There is arthralgia and joint swelling. NO muscle cramps, muscle
weakness or stiffness
• Metabolic and endocrine : denies cold intolerance, heat intolerance, polydipsia, polyphagia,
The patient is Obese, oriented man, Not in respiratory distress.
Pulse 92 bpm
Respiratory Rate 16 breaths per minute
Blood Pressure 120/88 m Hg
Oxygen Saturation%: 97% on RA
• There is widespread erythema affecting the
face, trunk and limbs with thickening of the skin
and associated widespread thick Scale .
• Thick scale is present through the scalp with
dystrophy of all 20 nails. (onychodystrophy)
• Over the elbows erythematous plaques with
overlying thick scale are seen.
• There is also swelling, pain, and rigidity in his
knees and elbows
• Based in the history and clinical examination what is the most likely diagnosis?
1. lichen planus.
2. erytherodermic psoriasis.
3. Atopic dermatitis.
4. Erythema multiform.
5. stevens johnson syndrome
1. lichen planus. (small, polygonal, flat topped papules with Wickham’s striae)
2. erytherodermic psoriasis.
3. Atopic dermatitis. (Fine scale in atopic dermatitis) (no history of allergy)
4. Erythema multiform. (Classic targets / iris – triphasic)
5. stevens johnson syndrome (epidermal detachment, >2 mucosal sites
involvement, after drug exposure)
Why it’s Erytherodermic psoriasis ???
• Erythema of all skin associated with desquamation scaling
• Classic plaques of psoriasis over his elbows.
• History of scalp scaling.
• Family history of psoriasis.
• Dystrophic nails.
• There is severe pruritus and fever.
Presence of erythema and scaling involving
more than 90%of skin surface.
Primary: erythema (often initially on trunk)
extends within few days to weeks to involve
whole skin surface. Followed by scaling
Secondary: generalisation of a preceding
localized skin disease (e.g. psoriasis, atopic
Erythroderma – clinical features
• Rapidly extending erythema (may be universal in 12-
• Fever, shivering, malaise- hypo>hyperthermia
• Scale (fine/thick) –after 2-6 days
• Pruritus (90%) + tightness of skin
• There is also onycholysis of nails
• Admit to hospital (if acute/unwell)
• Bed rest
• Management of fluid balance and temperature
• Review medications (cease non-essential)
• Treat underlying aggravating condition and any infection
• Emollients, +/- mild/mod topical steroids
• Wet dressings
• Systemic steroids in some (not if ?psoriasis)
• Referrals – Nutrition/Cardiology
Specific treatment for erytherodermic psoriasis
• Oral retinoid
• Biological (infliximab)
Which one of the following statements is true about Erytherodrma ?
a) Erythema of part of skin( < 40 % of skin surface) in erytherodermic psoriasis.
b) There isThick scale in atopic eczema
c) You can give systemic steroids in erytherodermic psoriasis.
d) Infliximab can be used to treat erytherodermic psoriasis.
• Erythorderma is when almost the entire skin (>90%) becomes red.
• It is a serious and at times life threating dermatological emergencies.
• Management is supportive in addition to treatment of underlying skin disease.
• 100 cases in Dermatology.