The term "scales" is meant in the field of dermatology as an accumulation of skin of horny material (that is, consists of keratin). The accumulation of scales is visible to the naked eye and, depending on the diseases which causes them and the characteristics of the individual subject who is hit, can be more or less conspicuous.

The origin of the accumulation of scales happens in a case of turnover of the epidermis, which is process that leads to particularly accelerated production and demolition of the cells of the skin.

There are several diseases that may be associated with the presence of scales, ranging from dermatitis to psoriasis, scabies, passing through the pityriasis and tinea versicolor.

Depending on the pathology that is the origin of the formation of the accumulation of scales, there are various symptoms that can accompany the condition: itching, redness, burning, papules and / or plaques.


What kind of diseases can be associated with scales?

The following diseases may be associated with scales:

  • Actinic keratosis
  • Dermatitis
  • Atopic dermatitis
  • Seborrheic dermatitis
  • Dermatophytosis
  • Ichthyosis
  • Lichen planus
  • Systemic lupus erythematosus
  • Molluscum
  • Pityriasis rosea
  • Psoriasis
  • Scabies
  • Tinea versicolor
  • Burns

Remember that this is not an exhaustive list and it is highly recommended to consult your doctor, in case of symptom’s persistence.


What is the therapy for scales?

Since the medical conditions that are associated to the formation of scales on the skin are many and different from each other, it is essential to diagnose the disease that underlies it. You should avoid "do it yourself" remedies. Improperly made medications may in fact overlap with the underlying disease and can cause other conditions like allergies, irritations and infections that can complicate the diagnostic picture.


When is most likely to contact your doctor in case of scales?

In all cases of scales, it is always good to consult your doctor or the emergency room.