Treatment of intertriginous psoriasis: from the Medical Board of the National Psoriasis Foundation

J Am Acad Dermatol. 2009 Jan;60(1):120-4. doi: 10.1016/j.jaad.2008.06.041.


Background: Involvement of areas of the skin fold is common in patients with psoriasis although the exact incidence is unknown. This report summarizes studies regarding the therapy of intertriginous psoriasis.

Objective: A task force of the National Psoriasis Foundation Medical Board was convened to evaluate treatment options. Our aim was to arrive at a consensus on therapy for intertriginous or inverse psoriasis.

Methods: Reports in the literature were reviewed regarding psoriasis affecting the skin-fold areas and its therapy.

Limitations: There are few evidence-based studies on the treatment of intertriginous psoriasis.

Results: The recommended short-term (2-4 weeks) therapy for inverse psoriasis is low- to mid-potency topical steroids. For long-term therapy, topical calcipotriene (calcipotriol) or one of the immunomodulating agents, pimecrolimus or tacrolimus, is favored.

Conclusions: Low- to mid-potency topical steroids are recommended as first-line, short-term treatment. It is recommended that their use should either be of limited duration (less than 2-4 weeks) or that the lowest effective strength be used intermittently for long-term care to minimize the potential for risks. Calcipotriene (calcipotriol), pimecrolimus, and tacrolimus, while not as highly efficacious as topical steroids, are associated with fewer long-term risks and are therefore recommended for long-term therapy when feasible.

Publication types

  • Consensus Development Conference
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones / therapeutic use
  • Algorithms
  • Calcitriol / analogs & derivatives
  • Calcitriol / therapeutic use
  • Dermatologic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Immunologic Factors / therapeutic use
  • Psoriasis / drug therapy*


  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones
  • Dermatologic Agents
  • Immunologic Factors
  • calcipotriene
  • Calcitriol