This skin disease is linked to higher heart disease risk

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When you think of psoriasis, you probably imagine the visible skin symptoms—red, scaly patches that are not only uncomfortable but also affect a person’s self-esteem.

However, what many don’t see is that psoriasis carries a deeper, more concerning risk: a heightened chance of developing heart disease.

Psoriasis goes beyond skin issues; it’s a chronic autoimmune disorder. This means that the body’s immune system, which normally protects us by fighting off invaders like bacteria and viruses, mistakenly attacks healthy cells.

In psoriasis, it’s the skin cells that are under siege, leading to their rapid buildup and the scaly patches that are the hallmark of the condition.

But the problem isn’t confined to the skin. Research indicates that psoriasis patients are more likely to suffer from heart diseases such as coronary artery disease, heart attacks, and strokes.

The connection between psoriasis and these heart conditions stems from inflammation, which is central to psoriasis.

This type of chronic inflammation, while a natural protective response, can be harmful if it becomes constant. In psoriasis, the ongoing inflammation that affects the skin can also damage other parts of the body, including the heart and blood vessels.

Essentially, the inflammation visible on the skin might also be occurring internally, including in critical areas involved in heart function.

Studies support this link robustly. Notable findings show that individuals with severe psoriasis have up to a 58% increased risk of major heart events and a 43% increased risk of stroke compared to those without psoriasis.

Alarmingly, these risks are not confined to older adults— even younger people with severe psoriasis face a significantly elevated risk, underscoring the broad and serious impact of psoriasis on heart health.

Moreover, the inflammation seen in psoriasis may contribute to other heart disease risk factors, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and obesity.

Psoriasis patients are also more prone to diabetes, another key risk factor for heart disease. These interconnected factors create a complex risk profile that significantly endangers the cardiovascular health of those with psoriasis.

Recognizing this link is crucial for anyone with psoriasis. Managing the skin condition through anti-inflammatory treatments can help mitigate some of the associated heart risks. However, maintaining heart health goes beyond managing psoriasis alone.

Adopting heart-healthy lifestyle practices is essential. This includes eating a balanced diet, engaging in regular exercise, quitting smoking, and managing stress—all of which are particularly important for those living with psoriasis.

In conclusion, understanding that psoriasis is not just a skin condition but a systemic issue affecting the whole body, including the heart, is vital.

This recognition should drive a comprehensive approach to care and prevention, focusing on both managing the skin symptoms and reducing the risk of heart disease.

By addressing both aspects, individuals with psoriasis can take important steps toward protecting their overall health and well-being.

If you care about heart health, please read studies about the best time to take vitamins to prevent heart disease, and scientists find how COVID-19 damages the heart.

For more information about heart health, please see recent studies about Aspirin linked to higher risk of heart failure, and results showing Blackcurrants could improve artery functions, blood pressure in older people.

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