Alternative therapy

Conventional (allopathic) medicine today is adjusting to some alternative approaches to psoriasis treatment such as acupuncture, herbal remedies, meditation, magnets, etc. Terms like "integrative" or "complementary" are often used to describe these treatments, some of them very often used together or in combination with conventional medicine.

Chinese medicine

Chinese herbal formulas (also called "traditional Chinese medicine") have been used in for many years, yet they haven't undergone the rigorous scrutiny of controlled clinical studies to prove its effectiveness in treating psoriasis. Several successful Chinese medicine preparations were noted in an article in the November 1998 Archives of Dermatology, but the authors warned of potentially dangerous side effects from the use of some unregulated products.


Doctors have noted that the skin of some psoriasis patients will sometimes improve on a weight-loss diet and that weight gain can cause psoriasis to flare or worsen. Many dermatologists believe that maintaining a healthy weight may have beneficial effects on an individual's psoriasis. However certain complications and serious side effects can occur from taking dietary supplements.


Climatotherapy involves the notion that some diseases can be successfully treated by living in a particular climate. Several psoriasis clinics are located throughout the world based on this idea. The Dead Sea is one of the most popular locations for this type of treatment. Sunlight can have a beneficial effect on psoriasis. Climatotherapy has been used for many years in the Dead Sea and the Canary Islands, Spain, with good results.

The treatment is basically very straight forward. The minimum stay should be for three weeks however, some people achieve excellent results in two. You need to build up exposure to the sunshine to 5 hours a day and take two twenty minute dips in the Dead Sea each day. The cost of this trip is quite prohibitive to a lot of people, but for most, on seeing the results, think it is money well spent and will return as and when they feel necessary.

Psoriasis fish treatment

Psoriasis fish treatment is quite popular in Turkey, where the doctor fish, which live in outdoor hot thermal pools, feeds on the dead skin of people affected by psoriasis. The fish only consume the affected areas of the skin. The outdoor location of the spa also has a beneficial effect. This treatment can provide temporary relief of symptoms. The combination of the selenium -rich mineral waters, the fish and mountain sunlight have been helping psoriasis sufferers for years. A treatment however should continue for at least 3 weeks so that it can have a complete positive effect on the patient. Treatment in this hot spring has been examined in two small clinical trials, with positive results.

Patients suffering from a variety of skin diseases including eczema, dermatitis, athlete's foot, acne and psoriasis are currently traveling from all around the world to this remote spa, situated 5,000 feet high above sea level in the Central Anatolia region of Turkey. Not many places have a hot spa pool, home to hundreds of small insatiable fish, waiting to literally eat your dead flesh away. The sensations created by this process are being described as pleasant and relaxing. However the psoriasis treatment regimen is not for the fainthearted. Twenty-one days of twice-daily, four-hour bathing sessions in the fish pools is prescribed, plus drinking 1.5 liters of spa water a day on an empty stomach. Nevertheless, many of the guests saw a major improvement in their skin condition during and after the treatment.