According to dermatologists – skin specialists, and endocrinologists – gland specialists at the University of Verona in Verona, Italy, the skin condition psoriasis raises the risk of developing the metabolic syndrome. Their report was published in the January and February 2018 copy of the Journal of Clinical Dermatology.
Psoriasis is a non-contagious skin disorder in which skin cells divide too fast and slough off in white or transparent scales. The metabolic syndrome is similar to Type 2 diabetes.
Signs and symptoms of psoriasis include…
- raised, red inflamed patches of skin,
- white scales,
- pain, and
- dry, cracked skin that can bleed.
Signs and symptoms of the metabolic syndrome include…
- Type 2 diabetes,
- mild insulin resistance,
- belly fat,
- high blood pressure,
- abnormal blood fats, and
- nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.
People diagnosed with psoriasis are at least twice as likely to develop the metabolic syndrome as non-psoriatic individuals. The former has a 20 to 50 percent risk.
Cortisone is one conventional method of treating psoriasis, but it can raise blood sugar levels. According to the Verona specialists, the biological medications are safer. Treating psoriasis patients with low-calorie diets and exercise is recommended to achieve and/or maintain a healthy lean weight.
Another type of medication recommended by the Verona dermatologists is the biologicals. Psoriasis is caused by autoimmunity, in which the immune system attacks the body. The biologicals work to calm down the immune system…
- patients must stop the medication if they acquire an infection, such as a cold.
- a yearly flu shot is a good idea for people with psoriasis taking one of the biologicals – and a good idea for everyone else as well.
The biologicals are given by injection just under the skin of the arms, abdomen, or thighs. A list of these medications include…
- adalimumab (Humira),
- brodalumab (Siliq),
- etanercept (Enbrel),
- golimumab (Simponi),
- infliximab (Remicade),
- ixekizumab (Taltz),
- secukinumab (Cosentyx), and
- ustekinumab (Stelara).
The biologic medical products work by interfering with pro-inflammatory molecules released by the immune system…
- Enbrel, Simponi, Remicade, and Humira interfere with TNF alpha or tumor necrosis factor alpha. TNF alpha is a proinflammatory cytokine, a protein involved in causing inflammation. It is secreted mainly by monocytes and macrophages, white blood cells that produce inflammatory reactions. It is also built to some extent by a white blood cell called the lymphocyte, blood vessel cells, and fibroblasts, cells that cause blood clotting.
- Siliq, Cosentyx, and Taltz work by blocking human interleukin 17, another inflammatory molecule.
- Stelara blocks inflammatory molecules interleukin 22 and interleukin 23.