Severe Psoriasis Linked to Major Adverse Cardiovascular Events

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Media Contact:Jessica Mikulski | jessica.mikulski@uphs.upenn.edu | 215-349-8369April 4, 2011

Psoriasis is a common inflammatory skin disease, and if severe, has been demonstrated to be a risk factor for cardiovascular (CV) disease. However, the degree to which psoriasis is associated with major adverse cardiac events (MACE), such as heart attack, stroke, and cardiovascular death has not been defined. Now, new research from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine has revealed an increased incidence of MACE in patients with severe psoriasis.

In a cohort study analyzing data from a general practice research database, Penn researchers reviewed the case histories of over 3,600 patients with severe psoriasis and 14,300 controls. Lead author Nehal N. Mehta, MD, MSCE, Director of Inflammatory Risk in Penn's Preventive Cardiology program, and colleagues found that patients with severe psoriasis have a 53 percent increased incidence of MACE compared to the general population. They also found that having a diagnosed case of severe psoriasis confers an additional ten-year risk of 6 percent on MACE. The study results were reported at the 2011 American College of Cardiology meeting in New Orleans.

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