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Research Shows Patients With Psoriasis at Increased Risk for Developing Other Serious Medical Conditions
Date:3/24/2008

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 be
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SOURCE American Academy of Dermatology
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