Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory skin disorder affecting almost 7,000,000 Americans. In the past decade numerous research have shown patients with psoriasis have increased risk for various other diseases such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and other metabolic syndromes.
At a recent European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology 2015 meeting, there was an interesting presentation by Dr. Ching-Chi Chi, professor of dermatology at Chang Gung University in Taiwan, documenting a higher risk for developing kidney disease in patients with psoriasis. The research was conducted in Taiwan where the investigator included 4633 patients with psoriasis. 453 patients were classified as having severe psoriasis and the other 4180 were classified as having mild disease. When compared to the general population in Taiwan, patients with severe psoriasis had a 1.9 fold increased risk of developing chronic kidney disease and a threefold increase for developing end-stage kidney disease. This risk factor was independent of other factors such as age, gender, cardiovascular disease, gout, high blood pressure or high lipid level and the use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. This study was not the first time where increased risk of developing kidney disease in psoriasis patient was documented. In 2013, investigators from University of Pennsylvania concluded that moderate to severe psoriasis patients had an increased risk of a chronic kidney disease1.
In conclusion, the researcher highlighted that psoriasis is not only an inflammatory condition that affects the skin. Patients with severe psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis need periodic evaluation by their general doctors to assess their kidney function. In addition, avoidance of long-term use of drugs that can be toxic or harmful to the kidney should be avoided.