National Psoriasis Foundation releases consensus guidelines for treatment of plaque psoriasis

PORTLAND, Ore. (January 25, 2012)—To assist the millions of Americans living with psoriasis, the most common autoimmune disease in the country, the National Psoriasis Foundation published the most recent guidelines in the United States for the management of plaque psoriasis—the most prevalent form of the disease, affecting roughly 80 percent of people with psoriasis.

The consensus guidelines from the National Psoriasis Foundation Medical Board, adapted from the Canadian Guidelines for the Management of Plaque Psoriasis to reflect U.S. practice patterns, aim to clarify when to use oral and biologic medications for people whose psoriasis is beyond topical treatment. A table summarizing the latest research and thinking on eight drugs provides data on when and how to best use them in a way that has not been done before.

"It's a bold table in that it says directly which treatment will work or which has little evidence to support it," said Dr. Sylvia Hsu, a member of the Psoriasis Foundation Medical Board. "It spells out clearly in one or two sentences which method is safer than we previously thought."

One example is the recommendation that cyclosporine, an immunosuppressant drug taken orally, may be used as a short-term solution for up to 12 weeks, although FDA guidelines allow its use for up to 12 months.

The new guidelines also state that ustekinumab, commonly known as Stelara, is safe and effective as a first-line therapy. Previously, its use has been limited to second and third-line treatment.

View the guidelines and table »


About the National Psoriasis Foundation

Celebrating 50 years of patient support, advocacy, research funding, and education, the National Psoriasis Foundation (NPF) is the world’s leading nonprofit fighting for individuals with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. NPF is on a continued mission to drive efforts to cure psoriatic disease and dramatically improve the lives of more than 8 million Americans affected by this chronic immune mediated disease.  As part of that effort, in 2016 the NPF created a Patient Navigation Center to offer personalized assistance to everyone with psoriasis or psoriatic arthritis. In addition, the NPF has funded more than $15 million in research grants and fellowships to date. Learn more at www.psoriasis.org.