The Link Between Psoriasis and Metabolic Syndrome

If you have psoriasis you should be tested for metabolic syndrome.

Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory skin condition that affects millions of people, with plaque psoriasis (so named for its inflamed, silvery plaques) the most common of the five types, accounting for 80 percent of cases.

Psoriatic disease is also an autoimmune condition, characterized in part by an out-of-whack immune-system response that causes the body’s internal defense system to attack itself.

Research linking psoriatic disease and metabolic syndrome — a cluster of cardiovascular risk factors that include obesity, hypertension, insulin resistance, and dyslipidemia — continues to mount, with some studies reporting that 30 percent or more people with psoriasis also have metabolic syndrome.

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Before beginning a treatment regimen, Westchester dermatologist Marc Grossman, MD, FACP, checks for metabolic syndrome (“It can be done with simple blood tests,” he says) when diagnosing patients with psoriasis.

Though the exact connection between the two conditions has not yet been discovered, research has shown a relationship between growing BMI (Body Mass Index) and the severity of psoriasis.

Patients with psoriasis should be tested by their doctors for metabolic syndrome, and, if the syndrome is present, it should be addressed and treated.

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