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BioDrugs. 2013 Jan;27 Suppl 1:3-12. doi: 10.1007/BF03325637.

Treatment of psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis.

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Third Department of Dermatology, A. Syggros Hospital, Athens, Greece.


Skin and joint manifestations associated with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis (PsA) can significantly impact a patient's quality of life. Successful treatment is imperative in order to improve signs and symptoms of the disease, and to alleviate physical or psychological distress. For patients with mild psoriasis with or without PsA, topical agents and targeted phototherapy are appropriate treatments for psoriasis. Systemic therapies, such as methotrexate and phototherapy are recommended options for patients with more severe psoriasis, but their long-term use is hindered by safety concerns. Advancements in understanding the pathogenesis of psoriasis, including the role of T cells and cytokines, have been crucial to the development of biological therapies. These target the immune system and are suitable options for patients with extensive disease. Biological therapies for the treatment of psoriasis include targeted therapies (alefacept) and anti-cytokine therapies (anti-tumour necrosis factor [TNF] therapies [adalimumab, etanercept, infliximab] and a monoclonal antibody against interleukin [IL]-12 and IL-23 [ustekinumab]). Patients with PsA should be treated appropriately in order to improve symptoms and inhibit structural joint damage. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or local intra-articular injections of corticosteroids can be used successfully in patients with mild PsA; however, neither treatment prevents the development of structural joint damage. For patients with moderate to severely active PsA, disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (such as methotrexate), TNF inhibitor treatments (adalimumab, etanercept, infliximab and golimumab) or their combination are considered first-line treatment. This review provides a brief overview of treatment options for psoriasis and PsA, with an emphasis on the efficacy and safety of anti-TNF therapies.

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