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After Psoriasis: Treatment Effects on Comorbidities

Treating psoriasis with biologic drugs can reduce the early plaque buildup that clogs arteries, restricts blood flow, and leads to heart attacks and stroke, according to a study funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) that appears online in the journal Cardiovascular Research.

“Classically a heart attack is caused by one of five risk factors: diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol, family history, or smoking,” says Nehal N. Mehta, MD, head of the Lab of Inflammation and Cardiometabolic Diseases at NHLBI, in a news release. “Our study presents evidence that there is a sixth factor, inflammation; and that it is critical to both the development and the progression of atherosclerosis to heart attack.”

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Lasers for Radiation Dermatitis

Anthony Rossi, MD, discusses the evolving role of lasers in treating radiation dermatitis. The common condition may be underappreciated for the emotional and psychosocial impact it has on patients in addition to cosmetic concerns, he says.

“Lasers have become an interesting treatment for chronic radiation dermatitis. I use a mixture of vascular specific lasers as well as pigment specific lasers and even some fractional ablative lasers. And this is done in a very, very conservative manner because the skin is like a scar,” he says. Watch now:

Now researchers provide the first in-human evidence that treatment of a known inflammatory condition with biologic therapy is associated with a reduction in coronary artery disease, in particular of rupture-prone plaque, which often leads to a heart attack.

The current findings come from an observational study of the NIH Psoriasis Atherosclerosis Cardiometabolic Initiative cohort, which had 290 psoriasis patients, 121 of whom suffered moderate to severe skin disease and qualified for the biologic therapy approved by the FDA.

“The findings that intrigued us most were that coronary plaque sub-components changed over one year, including the necrotic core and non-calcified components, which are the culprits for most heart attacks,” Dr. Mehta says.

Prior research had linked psoriasis with premature development of high-risk coronary plaque. The current research shows beneficial changes in plaque when psoriasis is treated with biologic therapy—even without changes in other CV risk factors such as cholesterol, glucose, and blood pressure.

“Our data are observational so the next steps should be randomized, controlled trials,” Dr. Mehta concludes.

Jerry Bagel, MD, Director of the Psoriasis Treatment Center of Central New Jersey, points out that it has been well established that psoriasis is an independent risk factor for myocardial infarction.

“This study provides data that improving psoriasis with biologic therapy reduces the incidence of heart attacks,” he says. “Hence in the systemic picture of pathology, the benefits of biologics, improving psoriasis, quality of life, decreasing the amount of stents, coronary artery bypass graft, morbidity and mortality of cardiovascular disease, in my mind supports the idea that the benefits of treatment clearly outweigh the risks.”

Peak Health Launches Plant-Based Regenerative Skincare Line

Peak Health launched Curere, a patented, regenerative skincare line created to treat a range of skin conditions, including acne, third-degree burns, and necrosis.

The line is made from all-natural ingredients intended to penetrate the dermal layer of skin and activate stem cells while also facilitating faster wound healing and preventing infection. The generation of new skin tissue eradicates imperfections associated with dead skin and helps to remove signs of aging. The plant-based skincare line features a concentrate, gel, lotion, cream and scrub which can be purchased through the Phyto-Farmacy shop online.

The company says Curere is designed to decrease the risk of certain skin complications.

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