Many patients report that the symptoms of active psoriasis make them feel isolated and/or withdrawn, which is unfortunate. However, these feelings and behaviors are not productive when working with a dermatologist. If anyone (beyond the patient) understands the skin disorder, it’s a dermatologist. At West Houston Dermatology, Dr. Stephen Mahoney wants the patient to be an active partner in treating his/her psoriasis because only the patient can monitor the disorder on a daily basis and report flare-ups and skin clearing, as well as what was going on when the flare-up or clearing occurred. It’s helpful for the patient and his/her dermatologist to keep a diary of symptoms to record where psoriasis is present on the body (even in the areas the doctor cannot see). Patients should always report all medications (including dietary supplements) s/he is taking. If the patient is seeing a dermatologist for the first time or seeing a new dermatologist for psoriasis, then the patient should provide information on each psoriasis treatment s/he has taken in the past and presently, such as topical creams, PUVA, phototherapy, oral medications, and/or biologic injections. While people who are uneducated about psoriasis may be (or seem) judgmental, one’s dermatologist is not among that group. The more you can share with your dermatologist, the better.