Linzi - Pustular psoriasis

A severe flare of pustular psoriasis left Linzi needing a stay in hospital for treatment. Five years on and she is in a much better place with her skin.

I am Linzi, 35 years old and I live with my husband and 3-year-old daughter, Isla, in Scotland. My psoriasis started in tiny patches just over 10 years ago when I started as a primary teacher. My pustular psoriasis did not appear until a few years later with a particularly severe flare that took several GP visits and consultant appointments to be properly diagnosed.

When it first appeared, winter had set in, I had a very challenging class that year and suddenly my body was 60% covered in red, inflamed, broken skin, and on top of that, little whitehead spots had joined the madness from my chest down to my knees. I went back to my GP but unfortunately, was at the end of the queue because I had previously been discharged as an outpatient. The wait for an appointment began. But I could not wait.

My Mum paid for me to go private. A 15-minute consultation with a dermatologist and I was diagnosed with pustular psoriasis. I had never heard of this before and was told to stop using all steroid treatments immediately, only emollients to soothe. I was given a letter for my doctor to be seen urgently by an NHS dermatologist.

When I finally got an appointment at my local hospital, I was admitted to the dermatology ward that same day. A mixture of relief and disbelief hit me simultaneously; finally, I was getting some help, but I could not believe I was going to stay in hospital because of a skin condition.

Due to the raw nature of my skin and the need to stabilise my body, I could not try most of the normal avenues for psoriasis treatment like light therapy or coal tar. My consultant recommended Ciclosporine, a heavy-duty drug originally prescribed for transplant patients which can be effective in treating severe psoriasis. After 9 months on Ciclosporine, 3 months longer than my consultant had hoped, my skin was stable enough to move to an at-home coal tar treatment, which smelled foul but worked.

After a period of clear skin, I had a flare that was nowhere near the levels previously reached so I was offered light therapy. This worked wonders and although disruptive for 8 weeks, having to visit the hospital three times a week, my skin responded very well to it.

Five years on and my skin is much clearer and manageable. I still have spots on certain stubborn areas but no active pustules/whiteheads so, to my knowledge, I no longer have pustular psoriasis. I have not needed or seen a dermatologist since my last light therapy 2 years ago. I am now able to spot my triggers of stress and diet and manage my flares with a balanced diet, exercise and alternative routes for stress management such as breath work, yoga and meditation.

I also believe an acceptance that I do not need to be completely clear to feel content has helped my skin. Becoming a mother played a part in changing my priorities and giving me a greater perspective on what matters the most to me. Your worth and happiness are not defined by having clear skin.

Read more real-life stories from people living with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.

The Psoriasis Association is the UK's leading national charity and membership organisation for people affected by psoriasis – patients, families, carers and health professionals Read More >

Get in touch

The Psoriasis Association Dick Coles House 2 Queensbridge Northampton NN4 7BF

Email: mail@psoriasis-association.org.uk

Tel :
01604 251 620
WhatsApp :
07387716439
Registered with Fundraising Regulator -

© The Psoriasis Association Charitable Incorporated Organisation Number: 1180666 Scotland: SC049563 Privacy PolicyCookies

Site by Spoken Image | glitterfish

We use cookies to help us provide you with a better service, but do not track anything that can be used to personally identify you.

If you prefer us not to set these cookies, please visit our Cookie Settings page or continue browsing our site to accept them.