Psoriasis Symptoms Persist in Some Patients Receiving Ongoing Systemic Therapy

Extensive psoriasis lesions remained in 18% of patients undergoing treatment.

One of 5 individuals with psoriasis who undergo systemic therapy reap little benefit, a recent study suggests.

To analyze the clinical severity and quality of life in patients with psoriasis treated with systemics, the investigators used data from the Swedish Registry for Systemic Treatment of Psoriasis. Included in the study were 2646 patients who received systemic treatment for a minimum of 3 months.

The severity of psoriasis was measured by a clinical assessment by the physician or by a self-reported assessment of the patient’s skin-related quality of life.

A subgroup of persisting moderate-to-severe psoriasis was defined by Average Psoriasis Area and Severity Index (PASI) ≥ 10 and/or Dermatology Life Quality Index (DLQUI) ≥ 10 after less than 12 weeks of treatment.

The results of the study published in the Journal of Dermatological Treatment showed that in comparison to the larger patient group, the subgroup of patients with suboptimal therapy-response were younger, had a higher body mass index, had psoriatic arthritis, and were smokers.

Despite ongoing systemic treatment, 18% of patients still had extensive psoriasis lesions and/or suffered impairment of their skin-related quality of life.

“Almost 1 in every 5 patients had persisting moderate-to-severe psoriasis, despite ongoing systemic treatment,” the authors wrote. “Both comorbidities and lifestyle factors were associated with persisting moderate-to-severe psoriasis. The considerably lower generic quality of life in these patients demonstrates an unmet need. Subsequently, improved access to biologics and continuous drug development is needed in psoriasis.”