Advertisement

How does topical salicylic acid treat psoriasis?

Donna Hill Howes, RN
Family Practitioner

Topical salicylic acid (for example, Dermarest, Keralyt, or Salex) is a drug that is applied directly to the skin. It is usually used along with other topical medicines. It causes a shedding of the outer layer of skin. This helps to soften and lift the psoriasis scales. It also softens the plaques. Removing the scales makes it easier for other skin medications to be absorbed, and this promotes healing.

Topical salicylic acid is available over the counter and by prescription. Formulations include shampoos, creams, gels, ointments, liquids, pads or wipes, and patches that can be applied to the skin or scalp. 

This answer was adapted from Sharecare's award-winning AskMD app. Start a consultation now to find out what's causing your symptoms, learn how to manage a condition, or find a doctor.

Continue Learning about Nonsteroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs

An Alarming Side Effect of NSAIDs: Ovulation Stops
An Alarming Side Effect of NSAIDs: Ovulation Stops
According to research revealed at the 2015 European League Against Rheumatism Annual Congress meeting, many women stop ovulating after taking standard...
Read More
How do nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) work?
Debra Fulghum Bruce PhDDebra Fulghum Bruce PhD
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) work as an anti-inflammatory and pain reliever. Li...
More Answers
What should I know before I take celecoxib?
Donna Hill Howes, RNDonna Hill Howes, RN
If you are over age 65, celecoxib may not be a good option for you. If you are allergic to sulfa dr...
More Answers
Are Steroid Injections for Back Pain Safe?
Are Steroid Injections for Back Pain Safe?

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.