Around 30% of people who suffer from the skin disease psoriasis also live with an ailment called psoriatic arthritis. While problems with the skin manifest with this autoimmune disease, for people with psoriatic arthritis, it also affects the joints. Itchy, scaly skin along with crumbling nails are what most people think of when they hear the term psoriasis, but the inflammatory arthritis that affects the joints can be a source of great discomfort.
Autoimmune diseases are those which cause the body to essentially fight against itself. The body’s immune system attacks healthy tissue. The skin is involved in psoriasis. Both the skin and joints come underattack in psoriatic arthritis, which causes inflammation. The joints swell and produce pain. The condition must be treated aggressively, and needs to be caught in the early stages in order to reduce the likelihood of permanent damage to joints and tissue.
Treatment of Psoriatic Arthritis
Biologic disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs, or bDMARDs, are used in the treatment of psoriaticarthritis. These drugs are used to slow the progression of rheumatoid arthritis. There are different types of bDMARDs used in the treatment of psoriatic arthritis. The specific drug used to treat a patient is identified depending on the severity of the condition and symptoms, how the patient responds to treatments and other significant factors.
How bDMARDs Help Psoriatic Arthritis
Biologic DMARDs are made from living cells and have a tendency to be highly expensive. These types of drugs specifically target immune proteins called cytokines. They are very potent. Even though psoriaticarthritis cannot be cured, it can be controlled and perhaps put into remission with the use of bDMARDs. Existing joint damage is taken into account when prescribing a bDMARD or a combination of drugs.
When a bDMARD Fails
Treatment for psoriatic arthritis is not purely straightforward. If a specific bDMARD does not work or is not working efficiently, the doctor will need to make an adjustment and choose another drug or combination of drugs.
Alternative Treatments for Psoriatic Arthritis
If you have been diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis, your doctor will most likely begin treatment with NSAIDS, depending on the severity of your condition at the time of diagnosis. Disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs) are used to treat symptoms that have progressed in severity. There are also new oral treatments available. These treatments target inflammation by inhibiting specific molecules that cause it.
Once you are diagnosed, your doctor will work with you to find the most effective treatment. It is important to slow the progression of psoriatic arthritis as early as possible to prevent joint damage.
At DM Clinical Research, we are always discovering new ways to treat diseases. We invite you to contact us to find out more about our clinical trials.