My father's wife has psoriasis. She has the typical scaly plaque mostly on her legs and of course she is constantly challenged to find relief when the skin condition kicks up. What's important to remember is that psoriasis is not just a pesky skin condition - it is actually associated with some rather serious issues like psoriatic arthritis. Since psoriasis is an autoimmune disease, the arthritis aspect is not surprising. But psoriasis is also associated with sleep disturbance and it is a risk factor for heart disease.
Obviously itching and pain go hand-and-hand with psoriasis, so the sleep disturbance is understandable. But it's actually the psoriatic arthritis that really seems to encourage sleep disturbances. Why is this so important? Well, researchers and health experts now know that sleep disturbances put patients at risk for heart disease, diabetes and other conditions. In fact, a new recommendation to doctors is for them to screen patients that have psoriasis for: heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, and for doctors to realize that having psoriasis actually factors into an earlier death for patients.
The good news??? Treating psoriasis can easily reduce these risk factors including the increased mortality risk. Methotrexate and TNF-alpha blockers are some of the drugs used to keep psoriasis in check. Talk to your doctor about this information and persist in trying different therapies to get relief from psoriasis. Your life may just depend on it.
Published On: August 24, 2008