Different severities of
psoriasis deserve
different treatments

Your patients may seek freedom from their disease[1], and it begins with tailoring the management of their psoriasis, based on its severity. Avoiding psoriasis flares can have a significant impact on patients' quality of life.[2] Early skin clearance can lead to a lower risk of flares and longer treatment persistence in patients with psoriasis.[3] Hence, early intervention is key.

Depending on the needs of your patients, you may want to prescribe different treatments or refer them to a specialist to ensure they receive the most appropriate therapy for their condition.

An overview of treatment options

Psoriasis is one of the world's most effectively treated immune-mediated disease, with clinical improvements possible in 90% of patients.[4]

Have a look at recommended treatment options based on the severity of psoriasis here:[5][6][7][8]

Check your local treatment guidelines for more information

Your patients can achieve substantial improvement of their most burdensome symptoms, and can even be free of symptoms[9]

Explore the treatment options

Topical treatments

Topical therapies are helpful and important in most psoriasis treatment regimens.

However, they are generally insufficient to obtain and maintain skin clearance.[7]

Phototherapy

Phototherapy is an effective treatment option for patients requiring more than topical medications[6]. It may be insufficient for patients with moderate-to-severe psoriasis[8]; however it can be combined with biologics.[10]

Most sessions must be done at a medical facility, which may be a limiting factor for patients. However, patients can also use home-based equipment.[11]

Systemic non-biologics

The vast majority of systemic non-biologic treatments target the immune system.[7]

Although the introduction of biologics has fundamentally changed the management of psoriasis, non-biologics are still used, either as monotherapy or in combination with biologics.[7]

However, long-term use may be associated with a higher risk of adverse events.[7][12]

Biologics

For many people, biologics (such as TNFα, IL-17, IL-12/23, and IL-23 inhibitors) are life-changing as they can help control symptoms where other treatments have failed.[13]

Unlike other treatments, they target the inflammatory cascade underlying psoriasis.[14][15] As a ‘master regulator’ of autoimmune inflammation, IL-23 is a potent target for the treatment of psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.[15]

Psychological counselling

Psychological support can help reduce stress and decrease the risk of flare-ups. However, some patients may focus on their condition and on stress avoidance, leading to a worsening of their condition.[16]

Cognitive behavioural therapy aims to break this cycle.[16] Other adjunctive psychological intervention such as mindfulness-based therapy or motivational interviewing may improve patients’ condition.[16]

Physical activity

Patients with moderate to severe psoriasis are more sedentary than the general population and may face barriers to exercise due to their skin disease.[17]

However, being physically active to lose weight can reduce the severity of the disease, especially in overweight patients.[18]

Do you want to know more about psoriasis, treatments, and find resources for your patients?

As a general practitioner, you can change the course of your patients' psoriasis journey

Here are some key recommendations[19]

Children and young persons with symptoms of psoriasis should be referred to a dermatologist:

  • When you first see them

Adults should be referred to a dermatologist as soon as:

  • Diagnosis of psoriasis is uncertain
  • Psoriasis has a big impact on your patient's physical, psychological or social wellbeing

  • Psoriasis is severe or widespread

  • Psoriasis is not improving with topical treatments

  • You suspect acute guttate psoriasis

  • Nail psoriasis impacts your patient's appearance or use of their hands

Patients with generalised pustular psoriasis or erythroderma should be referred to a specialist immediately

Discover more

Identify psoriasis

Every type of psoriasis is different.

Beyond the skin

Psoriasis has a deep impact on patients' physical and mental health.