The Corrona registry, the largest independent psoriasis registry in the U.S., gathers information from patients with psoriasis to track their health and response to treatment. The registry now has more than 200 participating sites (including doctors, nurse practitioners and physician assistants in private practice, hospitals and research centers).
“The primary objective of the registry is to study the safety of FDA-approved systemic therapies,” says Corrona Franchise Director Stacey Hirata Holmgren. “The secondary objective is to study comparative effectiveness, including patient-reported outcomes.”
Aren’t we already pursuing these objectives through clinical studies? According to Bruce Strober, M.D., Corrona Psoriasis Registry co-scientific director (with NPF Medical Board chairman emeritus Mark Lebwohl, M.D.), the answer is yes – with some significant caveats.
“Clinical trials are extremely informative for studying the effectiveness of new medications and somewhat informative for studying their safety,” Strober explained. “However, clinical trials don’t explore real-world settings. They are more rigorous than realistic.
“The population of patients in a clinical study might be ‘cleaner’ than in the real world, with no other drugs or comorbidities. For example, no concomitant heart disease or a malignancy. Comorbidities might excuse you from the study.”
The patients in the Corrona Psoriasis Registry represent that real-world population. These are the only requirements for potential registrants:
- Must be diagnosed with psoriasis
- Must be 18 or older
- Must have started a new biologic within the past 12 months (combination therapy – for example, a biologic with a topical steroid – will not disqualify a patient)
Patients and their dermatologists complete questionnaires during regular office visits. Doctors are compensated for the data collected at each visit, and each patient receives a gift card for participating.
The uncrowned King of Corrona
Jerry Bagel, M.D., of Windsor Dermatology in East Windsor, New Jersey, believes in patient registries. He worked with Amgen, Abbvie and Janssen to find patients for their registries. But he has gone above and beyond for Corrona. In June 2017, the Corrona registry logged its 3,000th patient. Windsor Dermatology was one of the first sites on board when the registry launched in April 2015, and has enrolled more patients to date than any other site. More than 10 percent of them came from Windsor Dermatology.
Bagel lists three reasons for his participation with Corrona. “One, it’s really good science,” he says. “Two, we make this part of our strategy for treating patients. We bring them back at six months and check on adverse events. This also gives us the chance to check on compliance. Three, there’s the economic gain.”
The secret to Bagel’s success is straightforward. “In order to do the registry right, you should delegate it to someone else,” he says. “The Corrona registry takes about 15 minutes of patient time and about 20 minutes of data-entry time. What you don’t want to do is take away from helping-your-patients time.
“If you’re considering Corrona, you should ask yourself, how many psoriasis patients do you see? How many biological agents do you prescribe?” he advised. “We’re vested in Corrona because we’re vested in psoriasis.”
A more intelligent use of psoriasis treatments
“The Corrona dataset can revolutionize the way psoriasis is treated. But it can only be as strong as the data that go into it,” Lebwohl wrote in the Summer 2017 Journal of Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis.
“That’s why we need you – the dermatologist treating psoriasis patients every day – to become a registry site, and once you are a site, to recruit, enroll and follow up with your patients. Each of these steps make take 15 minutes, but the long-term benefit may be immeasurable.”
“By signing up to recruit patients for the registry, you won’t just be part of the assessment of these drugs,” Strober says. “You’ll be part of the endeavor to better understand and more intelligently use them.”