Psychosocial Impact of Plaque Psoriasis


Linda F. Stein Gold, MD, delves into the psychosocial impacts of living with plaque psoriasis.

Linda F Stein Gold, MD: We don’t always comment and think about the psychosocial impact, as you mentioned. And we know that these patients are significantly impacted. We know there’s a significant negative impact on their overall quality of life. You mentioned the depression, anxiety, stress, and the social isolation. There’s a negative impact on intimacy in general. As you mentioned, these patients have twice as likely an incidence of thinking about killing themselves, or a higher risk of attempting suicide and even completing suicide. This is something we must take very seriously.

Jerry Bagel, MD, MS: If I may, to tag on to what you’re saying, one study that resonated with me, maybe 8 or 9 years ago, they did a dermatology life quality index on the x-axis and family life quality index on the y-axis. And you can see that if people are involved with psoriasis, the family members are involved, it’s really transcending to the entire family. I’ve seen families where they’ve gotten divorced pretty much because their kids had psoriasis. They couldn’t handle it.

Linda F Stein Gold, MD: That’s a really important point. It is a major stress on the entire family unit. There was an interesting study when we talk about not just the family unit, but also the social isolation that these patients feel. There was one study that found that about 84% of patients report being discriminated against, or having daily humiliation based on their disease. I know we’re not psychiatrists, and you feel like sometimes it takes time to talk to our patients about the emotional factor. But it’s important to bring this up and make sure that they’re plugged into an appropriate support system.

Thank you, Mark, Jerry, and Leon for this rich and informative discussion. Thank you for watching this HCPLive® Peer Exchange. If you enjoyed the content, please subscribe to our e-newsletters to receive upcoming Peer Exchanges and other great content right in your inbox.

This transcript has been edited for clarity.

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