Kim Kardashian shares photos of her face covered with psoriasis
With a platform as big as Kim Kardashian's, you have the power to shape the opinions and attitudes of potentially millions of people. With 131 million following her on Instagram, Kim definitely has the ability to do some good if she chooses to - and her openness about her chronic skin condition has gone some way to combating stigma.
Psoriasis causes skin cells to build up, forming patches of red, dry skin. It doesn't have a cure and, according to the National Psoriasis Foundation, it affects around eight million Americans. Kim is one of these people, and has frequently posted about her flare-ups in the past.
This week, in a series of Instagram stories, she shared close-ups of the condition, labelling the images and videos as "psoriasis face" - with some of these flare-ups occurring as soon as she wakes up.
Her openness on the matter has already has received respect from others online, even those who aren't fans of her usually.
Kim was first diagnosed with the condition in 2011, when it started to spread across her body. Since then she's posted about it frequently, including asking her followers for suggestions on what she could do for it in December.
"I think the time has come I start a medication for psoriasis," she wrote in one tweet. "I’ve never seen it like this before and I can’t even cover it at this point. It’s taken over my body. Has anyone tried a medication for psoriasis & what kind works best?"
"The fact Kim Kardashian has had to pretty much defend the fact she has psoriasis flares is disgusting," one Twitter user wrote. "The media and a chunk of society who supports treading people down should be ashamed. Psoriasis is hard enough."
Another added that she's thankful for Kim being open about her condition, as she often feels "embarrassed & even ashamed to leave the house."
For those suffering from psoriasis, there are countless videos on YouTube that proclaim to have the perfect answer, but experts tend to advise people to seek help from a dermatologist.
A study released by a research team at the University Hospital Basel in Switzerland found that much of the information circulated on platforms like YouTube aren't that helpful. After viewing YouTube remedy videos, they found that 10 per cent of the advice given could be "potentially dangerous to users".
Depending on the severity of the condition, different treatments may be given by a licensed professional. Symptoms of mild psoriasis may be treated by topical creams alone, according to the Mayo Clinic, while regular moisturising of the skin is believed to be key to alleviate itchiness and dryness. Others, like Kim, have turned to wards light therapy (natural or artificial ultraviolet lights) to treat it.
Hopefully in the future, more widespread and complete forms of treating the condition become available.