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Obesity in psoriasis: the metabolic, clinical and therapeutic implications. Report of an interdisciplinary conference and review

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Experts on psoriasis convened with authorities from other medical specialties to discuss the recently described association between psoriasis, obesity and subsequent cardiovascular comorbidity. Similar to other diseases of increased systemic inflammation, psoriasis has been linked to a heightened risk of myocardial infarction, especially in the more severely affected, younger patients. However, unlike in other inflammatory diseases – such as rheumatoid arthritis – more severely affected patients with psoriasis are much more likely to be obese. Importantly, the pathophysiology of both psoriasis and obesity shows many shared cytokines that are known to contribute to features of the metabolic syndrome, such as hypertension, dyslipidaemia and insulin resistance. The strong association between psoriasis and obesity potentially makes psoriasis an important healthcare issue that requires an update in its standard of care. This meeting reviewed the evidence-based literature and addressed how, moving forward, dermatologists and other specialists may redefine the magnitude of health risk associated with more severe psoriasis and its comorbidities, while clarifying both the epidemiology and pathophysiology of the association with obesity.

Keywords: metabolic syndrome; myocardial infarction; obesity; psoriasis; psoriatic arthritis

Document Type: Meeting Report


Affiliations: 1: Ronald O. Perelman Department of Dermatology, New York University School of Medicine, 550 First Avenue, TCH-158, NY 10016, U.S.A. 2: Baylor Research Institute and UT Southwestern Medical School, Dallas, TX, U.S.A.

Publication date: 2007-10-01

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