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Psoriasis Associated With Increased Heart Attack Risk
People with psoriasis, a chronic inflammatory disease, may be more likely to experience heart attacks and strokes, according to a recent study which examined data on more than 87,000 Danish adults with mild to severe psoriasis and another 4.2 million people without the condition.
The study – which was published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology – found that the longer people lived with psoriasis, the more inflammation they had in their blood vessels, suggesting that inflammation damages the vascular system.
Each year of living with psoriasis was associated with a one percent increase in the future risk of cardiovascular events like heart attacks and strokes.
“It has been suspected that long-term exposure to low-grade systemic inflammation may increase the risk of cardiovascular events, but the effect of disease duration on the relationship between psoriasis and cardiovascular disease has been unclear,” said lead study author Dr Alexander Egeberg of Gentofte Hospital in Copenhagen. He said the inflammation in psoriasis is similar to the inflammatory processes that cause hardening of the arteries.
Previous research has linked the skin condition to heart disease, but these results offer new evidence that sustained inflammation can increase heart attack risk, even in patients who don’t have other risk factors such as smoking, diabetes or older age.
Researchers followed patients for an average of five years. In this period, 152,122 people without psoriasis had a major heart attack or stroke, equalling about eight out of every 1,000 in the population each year. Over that same time, 4,472 people with psoriasis a heart attack or stroke, which translates to about 11 people out of every 1,000 in the population each year.
The study’s authors said that physicians managing psoriasis patients should advise them of their increased risk of cardiovascular problems.
Rapaport, L. (September 29, 2017.) Psoriasis patients face increased risk of heart attacks and death. Yahoo7.
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