After the scientists realized that psoriasis is related to the patient’s immune system, the treatment options have been dramatically improved. There are 7.5 million sufferers of this skin disease in America alone, so this information came as good news to a lot of people. The connection between the immune system and psoriasis symptoms allowed the scientific community to develop new treatment options that include enzymes, proteins, biologic agents and other substances that occur naturally. Can the latest psoriasis treatment options bring hope about curing this disease?
Latest psoriasis treatment options: Stelara
Stelara is one of the latest psoriasis treatment options that have become available for the patients. This is a biologic drug that is taken by injections, starting with one dose of 45 mg for patients whose weight is lower than 220 lbs. For heavier patients, the dose is increased to 90 mg. The treatment continues four weeks later, when the second injection is taken. After that the patient receives Stelara injections once every 12 weeks. FDA has approved this drug in September 2009. The frequency of the treatment and its dosage are correctly determined by the patient’s doctor, so you should definitely discuss this treatment option with your health care provider. This drug is intended for the treatment of moderate to severe psoriasis. The results are promising: the condition of two-thirds of the patients was improved by 75% during the period of 12 weeks. This drug works by reducing inflammation and slowing down the skin’s production of cells. This treatment works on the immune system, which means that the patient’s ability to fight infections will be affected. The possible side effects include upper respiratory infection, fatigue and headaches.
Latest psoriasis treatment options: Enbrel
Enbrel is another relatively new treatment option for psoriasis. The Enbrel therapy is also taken with injections just below the skin. In comparison to Stelara, the injections are self-administered and taken more frequently. The patients should take an injection twice per week at the beginning of the treatment and continue taking one injection per week after three months from the beginning. Most of the latest psoriasis treatment options work on blocking the messages from the immune system. Similarly to Stelara, Enbrel also works in that way, but it is also considered an effective treatment for rheumatoid arthritis. According to the results from the trials, almost 50% experienced significant improvement of their condition over the period of three months. 75% of the patients noticed some improvement.
Latest psoriasis treatment options: phototherapy and topical treatments
The latest advances in the field of phototherapy and the latest psoriasis treatment options that combine ingested and topical drugs with UV light bring hope to the patients. Have in mind that UVA therapy isn’t effective when used alone. The treatment requires using a light-sensitizing medication (psoralen), which can be taken orally or applied topically. This combination works by slowing the growth of the skin cells and clearing the psoriasis. However, it does cause some unpleasant side effects such as redness, itching and nausea (all of them are treatable). As far as topical treatments are concerned, tar therapy and topical steroids can also be used for treating psoriasis. Topical steroids are only available by prescription, so you should consult your doctor about using them.