Primary care providers play an important role in both managing overall health and screening for comorbidities in psoriatic disease patients.
Psoriasis is a chronic, inflammatory disease that affects over 8 million Americans. Without appropriate treatment, psoriasis can profoundly decrease quality of life. Additionally, psoriasis is associated with comorbidities including cardiovascular disease, inflammatory arthritis, depression and others.
Patients should be fully educated about all aspects of their disease, including all potential systemic comorbidities. Each patient should also receive a specific, personalized treatment plan that is appropriate for their severity level.
In 2016, the NPF developed treatment target recommendations for providers. These goals stipulate that at the 3-month assessment after treatment is initiated, the body surface area (BSA) should be less than or equal to 1 percent. (An acceptable response is a BSA improvement of 75 percent from the patient’s baseline level or a BSA of 3 percent or less.)
At 6 months, it is expected that a BSA of 1 percent or less should be achieved. With defined treatment targets, providers and patients can regularly evaluate treatment responses and perform benefit-risk assessments of therapeutic options individualized to the patient’s level of disease severity, comorbidities, access to medical care and patient treatment preferences.
Currently, providers treating psoriasis patients have many therapeutic options available, including biologics, oral treatments, phototherapy and prescription topicals. The treatment targets do not exclude any treatment. The benefits and risks of all accessible therapies, as either monotherapy or combination therapy, should be considered in the patient-provider dialogue to achieve the patient’s treatment goals. To learn more, become a professional member and receive our free pocket guide.