People with the chronic skin condition psoriasis may be more likely to develop type 2 diabetes as well, according to an international study involving more than half a million people.
Researchers, whose results appeared in the Archives of Dermatology, found that this was especially true in those with severe psoriasis, who were 46 percent more likely to get a diabetes diagnosis than people without the condition, after weight and other health measures were taken into account.
Psoriasis is characterized by itchy, painful plaques on the skin. Previous studies have suggested the condition is tied to a higher chance of having heart disease, or suffering a heart attack or stroke, while other reports have hinted at a link between psoriasis and diabetes as well.
"We already knew that some of the risk factors for psoriasis and diabetes are similar, like weight," said Rahat Azfar, at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia and lead author of the study.
"We do think that psoriasis itself makes people at higher risk."
For the study, Azfar and her colleagues consulted five years' worth of electronic medical records from about 108,000 adults in the UK with psoriasis, and about 400,000 without. None of them had diabetes at the outset.
They found that 3.7 percent of those with psoriasis were diagnosed with diabetes over the course of the study, compared with 3.4 percent of the comparison group.
When patients' age, weight and high blood pressure were accounted for, psoriasis was still tied to a higher chance of developing diabetes, especially among the 6,200 people with severe psoriasis. In that group, 6.3 percent were diagnosed with diabetes.
According to the study team, the body-wide inflammation that is seen both in people with psoriasis and type 2 diabetes may explain the link between the two conditions. Azfar said psoriasis may induce that chronic inflammation through changes in the bloodstream, thus upping the risk of diabetes.
It could also be that people with psoriasis are more depressed or exercise less, helping to explain the difference in diabetes rates, said Robert Kirsner, a dermatologist from the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine who has studied psoriasis but was not involved in the study.
So far, the data cannot prove that psoriasis directly causes diabetes. And there have not been any studies to show definitively whether the ointments, pills or injections used to treat psoriasis have any impact on a patient's chance of getting diabetes, Azfar added.
Kirsner said that patients with psoriasis should talk with their doctors about other ways to reduce their diabetes risks, such as by adopting a healthier lifestyle.
"(The study) suggests that patients with psoriasis perhaps should be followed more closely and may want to adhere to a better diet and all those things to prevent diabetes," he said.
Two of the researchers reported financial relationships with pharmaceutical companies, including those that make diabetes and psoriasis drugs. SOURCE: http://bit.ly/LBTfef
PEG-2S promises to tackle superbugs that threaten world health
The change affects grazing conditions for the 146,000 or so semi-domesticated reindeer in Norway who feed on lichen and moss under the snow.
The discovery of the giant shipworm, a species never before studied, marked the first time scientists had live specimens in hand, according to an article published this week in American journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
As many as one in 45 children are diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder in the United States, according to a recent study by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
A full 1.6 billion people remain affected by NTDs -- more than 500 million of them children -- but that number is down from more than two billion in 2010, WHO said.
For the first time ever in modern history, a team of scientists Monday documented as what they're describing as large-scale river reorganization as a result of human-caused climate change.
In the next few hours he will receive a healthy kidney thanks to a pioneering system that has made Spain the world leader in organ transplants for the past 25 years.
Japan's corals, the northernmost in the world, could offer important data to bolster knowledge about marine life, as Australia's Great Barrier Reef faces a threat to its survival.
China is the world's largest consumer and producer of tobacco, and the industry provides the government with colossal sums.
During his time leading IAS, Mark Wainberg organised the 13th International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa, and he also co-chaired the same conference in Toronto in 2006.
The UN's health agency said the epidemic had left more than 25,000 people sick, warning that number was likely to double by the end of June.
80 percent of countries acknowledge that their financing is still not enough to meet their nationally-set targets for increasing access to safe water and sanitation, it found.
Study finds a significant decrease in just 3 years after a ban was put in place limiting the inclusion of trans fats in eateries
The illness causes acute inflammation of the outer layers of the brain and spinal cord, with the most common symptoms being fever, headache and neck stiffness.
Last year, the military was forced to apologize after a video surfaced of three soldiers torturing and strangling a stray dog to death with an iron chain, prompting several street protests.