Navigation Links
Research Shows Patients With Psoriasis at Increased Risk for Developing Other Serious Medical Conditions

Psoriasis patients urged to discuss risk factors with their doctors

SCHAUMBURG, Ill., March 24 /PRNewswire/ -- It has long been known that psoriasis, a chronic skin condition characterized by thick, red, scaly plaques that itch and bleed, can have a significant negative impact on a patient's overall quality of life. Now, dermatologists are finding that psoriasis, especially severe psoriasis, is linked with a number of serious medical conditions -- including cardiovascular disease, depression and cancer.

In the report entitled, "National Psoriasis Foundation clinical consensus on psoriasis comorbidities and recommendations for screening," published online in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, dermatologist Alexa B. Kimball, MD, MPH, FAAD, associate professor of dermatology at Harvard Medical School in Boston, Mass., led a task force of the National Psoriasis Foundation Medical Board that explored psoriasis co-morbidities. The group presented a summary of recently published research on the association between psoriasis and other medical conditions and recommendations on how dermatologists can help at-risk patients find appropriate preventative care or treatment.

"Our review found that people with more severe cases of psoriasis appear to have an increased incidence of psoriatic arthritis, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, diabetes, cancer, depression, obesity and even other immune-related conditions such as Crohn's disease," said Dr. Kimball. "I advise patients at minimum to follow the nationally recognized recommendations that are appropriate for their age and gender. These include getting regular, comprehensive exams from their doctors and working to make lifestyle changes such as losing weight, exercising more, quitting smoking, reducing high blood pressure, controlling cholesterol, maintaining emotional health, and managing diabetes as needed."

Cardiovascular Risk

Dr. Kimball noted that psoriasis has been associated with increased cardiovascular disease for decades. Initially, this was attributed to the increased prevalence of behavioral risk factors -- such as obesity and smoking, which are thought to be linked to the psychosocial burden of psoriasis. However, two recent studies have enhanced dermatologists' understanding of cardiovascular risk in psoriasis patients. "One large population-based study demonstrated an increased risk of myocardial infarction in patients with psoriasis -- particularly those with severe cases of the disease -- even when accounting for major cardiovascular risk factors, such as obesity, smoking, diabetes and hypertension," explained Dr. Kimball. "Similarly, a small study of a well-defined population of patients with very severe psoriasis demonstrated that these patients had a higher frequency of coronary artery disease compared to a control group of patients, even when controlling for known risk factors for atherosclerosis. Taken together, these studies suggest that psoriasis itself may be a risk factor for developing atherosclerosis and myocardial infarction."

Dr. Kimball advised psoriasis patients to follow the American Heart Association's established recommendations for cardiovascular risk factor screening, which includes an evaluation of a patient's blood pressure, body mass index, waist circumference, pulse, fasting serum lipoprotein (or total and HDL cholesterol), and fasting blood glucose.

Other factors that may increase the risk of cardiovascular disease include behavioral-driven risk factors such as obesity, smoking and depression. These risk factors can be modified by changes in lifestyle, including maintaining a healthy weight (often measured by Body Mass Index (BMI) < 25), physical activity for 30 minutes of moderate intensity several times a week and healthy eating habits. Dr. Kimball also recommended that psoriasis patients who smoke stop smoking.


Psoriasis has long been known to cause considerable emotional stress for patients, including a lack of self-esteem and an increased incidence of mood disorders, such as depression. One study estimates that approximately one-fourth (24 percent) of psoriasis patients suffer from depression.

"Depression in patients with psoriasis is a serious concern that should be addressed, as it may significantly impact a patient's overall emotional and physical well being," said Dr. Kimball. "Another concern is that depression may be a contributing factor to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, which as we know is already an increased risk in psoriasis patients."


A number of studies have found an increased risk of certain types of cancer in psoriasis patients, such as a form of skin cancer known as squamous cell carcinoma and lymphoma. In some instances, these cancers have been associated with specific psoriasis treatments which suppress the immune system. "Following the recommended routine health screenings for cancers and avoiding high-risk behaviors that increase the risk of developing some cancers, such as smoking, alcohol abuse, and intentional sun exposure, must be a high priority for psoriasis patients who may be at an increased risk for these potentially life-threatening diseases," said Dr. Kimball.

Dr. Kimball and the task force urged psoriasis patients to work together with their dermatologists and other appropriate physicians to outline an appropriate preventative program based on the patient's individual medical history and known risk factors to ensure they are continually monitoring for the potential onset of any health issues related to psoriasis. The authors hope that this review begins a dialogue on how to best diagnose, monitor, and treat the co-morbidities associated with psoriasis.

To learn more about psoriasis, visit and click on "PsoriasisNet" or, the National Psoriasis Foundation Web site.

Headquartered in Schaumburg, Ill., the American Academy of Dermatology (Academy), founded in 1938, is the largest, most influential, and most representative of all dermatologic associations. With a membership of more than 15,000 physicians worldwide, the Academy is committed to: advancing the diagnosis and medical, surgical and cosmetic treatment of the skin, hair and nails; advocating high standards in clinical practice, education, and research in dermatology; and supporting and enhancing patient care for a lifetime of healthier skin, hair and nails. For more information, contact the Academy at 1-888-462-DERM (3376) or

The National Psoriasis Foundation is the leading patient-driven, nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the quality of life of millions of Americans with psoriasis and/or psoriatic arthritis, and their families. The Psoriasis Foundation focuses on education, advocacy and research toward better treatments and a cure. For more information, please call the National Psoriasis Foundation, headquartered in Portland, Ore., at 1-800-723-9166, or visit

SOURCE American Academy of Dermatology
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Stanford researchers find culprit in aging muscles that heal poorly
2. Children of depressed moms do better when dad is involved, SLU researcher finds
3. UCLA researchers identify markers that may predict diabetes in still-healthy people
4. Mayo Clinic researchers discover new diagnostic test for detecting infection in prosthetic joints
5. New research shows how chronic stress worsens neurodegenerative disease course
6. New research explores newborn in-hospital weight loss
7. Research may unlock mystery of autisms origin in the brain
8. Bipolar disorder relapses halved by Melbourne researchers
9. HIVs impact in Zimbabwe explored in new research
10. U.S. Research Funding Continues to Flatten as U.S. Health Costs Climb - in August 31 Science
11. Cell that triggers symptoms in allergy attacks can also limit damage, Stanford researchers find
Post Your Comments:
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... ... as a Modern Man for 2015. , Angeleno Magazine is a division ... States. Established in 1994, Modern Luxury includes more than 50 magazine titles across ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... , ... December 01, 2015 , ... ... Center Enterprise Authorized Technology Provider (ATP) status from Cisco. This designation recognizes Tympani ... support Cisco Unified Contact Center solutions targeted to the high-end enterprise contact center ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... , ... November 30, 2015 , ... ... Beard and Brooke Bennett are collaborating with brands across various categories through traditional ... influential figures make up an elite group of Gold Medal Moms who can ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... & Caicos Islands, BWI (PRWEB) , ... December 01, 2015 , ... ... 2015. Recently Caribbean Journal, one of the leading digital news sites highlighting Caribbean ... top reason? The weather. While much of North America shivers under chilly grey ...
(Date:11/30/2015)... Garden City, NY (PRWEB) , ... December 01, 2015 , ... ... as a 2015-2016 inductee into its VIP Woman of the Year Circle. She ... is the nation’s leading networking organization exclusively for professional women, boasting more than 850,000 ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/1/2015)... , BANGALORE, India and ... -- Mylan N.V. (NASDAQ, TASE: MYL) today announced that it ... approval and for developing country markets funded by international ... 300 mg + Efavirenz 400 mg) for $99 per ... Access Initiative (CHAI) to develop TLE400. The significantly reduced ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... diciembre de 2015  AccuTEC Blades, una ... precisión, develó hoy un nuevo logo corporativo ... El nuevo logo destaca la experiencia de ... de productos con cuchillas donde "el borde ... --> ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... 2015 Breg, Inc ., a premier ... that it has been awarded three contracts by Novation, ... Novation will have access to improved pricing for Breg,s ... soft goods dedicated to advancing orthopedic care.  ... U.S. population, rising prevalence of chronic conditions and the ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: