Psoriasis can cause plaques that sometimes bleed or crack. To stop the bleeding, a person should clean their hands and gently apply pressure to the wound using sterile gauze. They should then clean the wound, apply a protective ointment, and watch for signs of infection.

Plaque psoriasis is the most common form of psoriasis. It leads to the formation of large circular or oval plaques, which often have a scale-like texture.

Bleeding can occur when a person scratches or picks at the scales. As a result, pinpoint amounts of blood may appear on the skin. This is known as an Auspitz sign.

These plaques can also crack, resulting in bleeding. This often happens in more severe cases when the plaques form around the joints.

This article looks at how to treat psoriasis bleeding. It also explains why psoriasis can lead to bleeding and explores ways to prevent this from happening. The article also discusses when to speak with a doctor.

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If bleeding occurs after a person scratches or picks at the plaques, they should wash their hands using warm water and soap before touching the wound and gently apply pressure using sterile gauze or another type of sterile dressing.

If a person develops bleeding as a result of a deep crack, they should also wash their hands with warm water and soap and gently apply pressure using sterile gauze.

If the blood comes through the first layer of gauze, they should place another piece of gauze on top of the first piece and continue as necessary until the bleeding has stopped.

After the bleeding has stopped

After the bleeding has subsided, a person should:

  • Clean the wound: People should clean the wound using running water. A person can use a gentle soap around the crack, ensuring not to get soap into the wound. If there is any dirt or lint in the wound, they should carefully remove it.
  • Apply a protective ointment: Applying a protective ointment such as petroleum jelly can help to keep the skin moist and aid in healing.
  • Watch for infection: Open cracks can get infected. People should keep an eye on the wound for any signs of infection, such as pus, discharge, tenderness, or worsening inflammation. The skin may also be hot to the touch.

People with psoriasis may also want to take some preventive steps at home. These can include:

  • Gentle skin care: To help prevent bleeding, handling the skin with care is important. An individual may wish to wash psoriasis plaques with lukewarm water while avoiding vigorous scrubbing or rubbing.
  • Moisturizing: A person can apply moisturizer after bathing or showering. However, they should only use moisturizers that are suitable for psoriasis.
  • Avoiding scratching or picking: Scratching and picking can cause damage to psoriasis plaques, making them more prone to bleeding. Trimming nails and wearing gloves at night can reduce this potential damage. If an individual has a strong urge to scratch or pick at a psoriasis plaque, applying a cool compress may help.

Treating psoriasis can help to manage the underlying condition. Although there is no cure, there are many treatment options available, such as:

  • topical medications, including:
    • corticosteroids
    • synthetic vitamin D analog
    • topical calcineurin inhibitor
    • salicylic acid
    • tazarotene
    • roflumilast cream
    • tapinarof cream
    • coal tar
  • light therapy
  • systemic medications, including:
    • apremilast
    • biologic medications
    • cyclosporin
    • methotextrate
    • acitretin
    • TYK2 inhibitor

Learn more about the treatment options for psoriasis.

Bleeding is not uncommon if a person scratches or picks at psoriasis plaques. However, cracks can be a sign of more severe cases of psoriasis.

Under these circumstances, an individual with psoriasis should contact a doctor.

They should also contact a doctor if there are any signs of infection.

A doctor or dermatologist will be able to provide instructions on how to care for the skin if a person has psoriasis.

Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory condition of the skin. It can cause scaly plaques to form on the skin.

Psoriasis may be itchy, causing a person to scratch or pick at the scales and plaques. This can cause bleeding. In more severe cases, cracks can form and bleed.

To stop the bleeding, a person should wash their hands and apply gentle pressure using sterile gauze. Once the bleeding has stopped, cleaning the wound and applying a protective ointment can help the skin heal and prevent infection.

To help prevent bleeding, a person can apply topical ointments and take medications aimed at treating psoriasis. It is also important to take care of the skin and avoid scratching or picking at the scales.