A personal blog about psoriasis.
This is a personal blog by someone with no medical skills, knowledge or aptitude whatsoever (although I was once in an episode of Holby City, and I survived so, you know, just sayin’…). I am simply recounting my experiences as a sufferer of a disease I see discussed very rarely. I know that in the search to tackle this dreadful blight, there are all sorts of debates about homeopathy, diet, traditional medicine et cetera: I’ve explored various avenues and had my fair share of successes and failures. No-one has yet managed to wrest me from its grip, and I’m not especially interested in debating the merits or otherwise of refraining from cheese or bathing in tar. This isn’t a place for such arguments, so I’m unlikely to publish any feedback strongly advocating one approach over another. I don’t want this corner of the Internet to become another battleground between the stethoscope and the hedgerow. Interesting personal stories of triumph, disaster or a slightly embarrassing moment on a bus, however, I will cherish. Otherwise: it’s just my story. It might be interesting, it might help, or it might have a good joke about The Singing Detective in it. That’s all. I’ll update it as regularly as I can, usually when I have a writing deadline elsewhere that I’m supposed to be meeting.
For those who have stumbled here by mistake, allow me to introduce myself, I am Toby, I am an actor and comedian, and I have suffered from psoriasis for the past 26 years. I don’t know if talking and writing about this unsightly and often irritating condition helps, but it’s so desperate for attention it seems rather churlish to deny it. It is such an individual disease though, that I can’t stress enough that anything I say or try here is purely subjective and unscientific and is in no way intended to be advisory. And I know it’s not as bad as cancer or amputation, but on its own terms and in isolation, it’s bad enough.
Psoriasis is a dermatological condition caused by the immune system reproducing skin cells at 8 times the rate that they should. It manifests as red, sometimes scaly patches on the skin (commonly on the elbows, knees and scalp), and afflicts about 4% of the population. I am one of the 4%, and these are my experiences. They will take the form of an on-going commentary on my treatment mixed with memories from the past and no small amount of trite wordplay.