Psoriasis Indicator of Vascular Risk in Diabetics
Researchers have discovered a link between psoriasis and diabetic-related vascular problems. Diabetic patients who have psoriasis are significantly more likely to develop micro and macro vascular complications.
Researchers at the University of California studied more than 6,000 patients with psoriasis and diabetes from the Thomson Reuters MarketScan medical database. They then matched those with diabetic patients who were psoriasis-free with the same profile, matching traits such as sex, diabetic complications and a score that calculated the patient’s risk of vascular complications. The researchers then followed up at one, three and five years.
After one year, 18.3 percent of the subject group had developed micorvascular complications, such as neuropathy or retinopathy, compared to 16.5 percent of those in the control group. After five years, 29.2 percent of patients in the subject group experienced microvascular complications, compared with 26.0 percent in the control. Similarly, macrovascular complications such as heart attack, stroke and heart attack happened in 28.6 percent of the subject group, compared to 25.7 percent of the control group.
The researchers further divided the subject groups into severity of psoriasis cases. Of the subject group, 73 percent were classified as having mild psoriasis, while 27 percent were classified as having moderate to severe psoriasis. They found that those with moderate to severe psoriasis were 16 percent more likely to suffer vascular complications, while those with mild psoriasis were 13 percent more likely to suffer the same.
Call to Better Control
As a result of these findings, Dr. April Armstrong of the University of California asks doctors to be extra vigilant when treating diabetics with psoriasis.
"In view of this greater likelihood of developing microvascular and macrovascular complications, clinicians may wish to consider closer disease management of diabetic patients with psoriasis."
Dr. Jashin Wu of the Los Angeles Medical Center concurs. Patients who have psoriasis "should get regular checks by their primary care doctor for high blood pressure, high cholesterol (and) diabetes - all those things are very important."