If you have psoriasis, you may be at higher risk of developing other serious conditions including diabetes.
Researchers from the Copenhagen University Hospital in Gentofte, Denmark included the entire Danish population in their study which confirms other reports of a psoriasis-diabetes connection.
The results were presented by Dr. Ole Ahlehoff at the European Society of Cardiology Congress 2012.
Psoriasis is a chronic or long-term disease that causes redness and irritation on the skin. Psoriasis often makes skin appear thick and may cause flakey, silver-white patches called scales.
Psoriasis is a common condition that affects approximately 125 million people around the world. It is not contagious which means if you have it you can’t give it to someone else.
Psoriasis causes the skin cells to grow too fast, which results in a buildup of dead skin cells on the surface of the skin.
Doctors believe psoriasis may be the result of the body’s immune system mistaking healthy skin cells for something dangerous. This triggers the immune system to try to get rid of the “bad” cells, which leads to inflammation or an inflammatory response by the body.
The Danish research group believes this inflammation associated with psoriasis may be part of the link between psoriasis and diabetes.
Diabetes is a condition that results when excess sugar builds up in the blood. This also causes a state of chronic inflammation or a chronic alert. Dr. Ahlehoff said, “This chronic state of alert may explain the increased risk of cardiovascular diseases and diabetes mellitus seen in those patients.”
The research study followed more than four million people for 13 years. Approximately 50,000 of the participants had psoriasis.
The study showed that people with psoriasis were at increased risk of developing new-onset diabetes compared to people who did not have psoriasis. It also showed that amount of increased risk was higher for more severe cases of psoriasis.
People with mild psoriasis were 1.5 times more likely to develop diabetes than people without psoriasis. People with severe psoriasis are twice as likely to develop diabetes.