Complications That Can Arise as a Result of Psoriasis

How Psoriasis Can Lead to Other Medical Issues

Did you know that the skin disorder known as psoriasis is sometimes accompanied by other complications such as psoriatic arthritis, obesity and high blood pressure? Fortunately, most of the more than five million Americans who suffer from psoriasis will never experience any of these complications. However, it is essential for every person with psoriasis to be aware of any of the possibly psoriasis related conditions that can arise so they can be addressed as quickly as possible. Here are some of the possible risks and health issues people with psoriasis should be aware of:

Psoriatic arthritis

This inflammation of the joints related to psoriasis resembles common arthritis and can be quite serious. In advanced stages it can cause joint damage that could result in a debilitating loss of mobility. Early treatment with anti-inflammatory drugs can minimize the joint damage.

Eye Conditions

Development of disorders of the eyes are more common if you have psoriasis. Conditions such as conjunctivitis or uveitis are possible, and treatments may include corticosteroids and medicinal eye washes, although unfortunately these treatments may also cause unwanted side effects with long term use.

Obesity

For reasons that are not fully understood, there is a link between psoriasis and the tendency towards becoming overweight. It is important that those suffering from psoriasis monitor their diet and do as their doctor advises to avoid gaining weight.

Diabetes

Again, the links between psoriasis and this disease are not fully understood, but people with severe cases of psoriasis have shown a greater likelihood of developing type 2 diabetes. Therefore, you should be checked for diabetes on a regular basis.

High Blood Pressure

It has also been noted that a tendency towards developing high blood pressure is more common among psoriasis sufferers than the general population. If it develops, proper medication is prescribed to lower the blood pressure.

Cardiovascular Disease

This is one of the more serious conditions that is sometimes associated with psoriasis, with heart risks as much as three times higher than average. There are multiple possible causes for this, such as the obesity and inflammation associated with psoriasis, as well as the possible side effects of psoriasis drugs, some of which have side effects that raise cholesterol and cause hardening of the arteries. Careful monitoring of cardiovascular health is essential.

Other Conditions

Psoriasis has also been linked to a number of other, rarer conditions that patients and their doctors need to be on guard for. These include Crohn’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, sclerosis, and kidney disorders. Psoriasis has also been known to contribute to quality of life issues such as depression and low self-esteem. Learning to overcome such emotional issues through counseling is an important part of learning to live successfully with psoriasis.

The good news is that most people who have psoriasis manage to avoid these unpleasant and sometimes even dangerous complications. The solution to avoiding or at least controlling these psoriasis related conditions is to be on guard for them so that as soon as any symptoms arise they can be addressed immediately by your doctor. In many cases, these complications can be minimized, reversed or even avoided entirely. Like with all aspects of psoriasis, a close working relationship with your primary healthcare provider is the key to living a healthy, productive life with psoriasis.

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