Can you please tell us a bit about yourself? What are your passions, hobbies, job?
I am a 79-year-old male living in New England. As you know, we have 4 seasons of weather that bring us wind, rain, snow, storms, hurricanes, etc. Our saying in New England is, “If you don’t like the weather, wait 5 minutes – it will change.” My passion is my family. They are very dear and important to me. I am retired, so my job is to be present to those whose lives I touch. I am a wood worker, but because of the impact psoriasis has had on my lifestyle, I have had to temper my involvement, and I only build wooden models now.
What type of psoriasis do you have, and how long have you experienced the disease?
I have had the following types of psoriasis over the years: plaque, palmoplantar, inverse, genital, guttate, and erythrodermic. I was first diagnosed in March of 1964 with psoriasis, so that is over 57 years.
Do you have PsA or other related diseases (comorbidities)?
I was diagnosed with PsA [psoriatic arthritis] in June 1976, and I was diagnosed with both ankylosing spondylitis and cervical spondylosis. I have had heart issues, but I am not sure they are comorbidities. I have had at least 15 biopsies for skin cancer that resulted in 9 or 10 procedures to remove either basal cell carcinoma or squamous cell carcinoma. In late 2020, I was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease.
How would you describe your unique experience of having psoriasis?
Maddening! It is a disease that can take over your life, and if you let it, it can separate you from everything. My unique experiences are mostly rooted in treatments. I did not respond to some of the treatments available. Another experience was the thickness of the plaques in the knee and elbow areas. It seemed as soon as you reduced the thickness it would be back in a couple of days. The difficult part is when they would crack and bleed.