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Cardiovascular Risk In Patients With Psoriasis: All You Need To Know!

By David Mercer

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This article was created after thorough research and has been improved with the assistance of AI technology. Furthermore, our dedicated editorial team has meticulously fact-checked and polished its content for accuracy and clarity.

Have you ever wondered if there’s a connection between psoriasis and heart health? Psoriasis, a chronic skin condition affecting millions worldwide, is more than just a skin problem. Recent studies have shed light on a surprising link between psoriasis and cardiovascular risk.

In this article, we’ll dive into the topic “Cardiovascular Risk in Patients with Psoriasis,” exploring the hidden dangers of this skin condition and what you need to know to keep your heart healthy. Get ready to uncover the truth behind this intriguing connection and learn how to take control of your well-being.

Key takeaways:

Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory skin condition that has been associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular diseases (CVD).
It is believed that the systemic inflammation associated with psoriasis plays a key role in linking this skin condition to heart disease.
Given the increased cardiovascular risk associated with psoriasis, it is important to be aware of this association and to monitor and manage traditional cardiovascular risk factors in psoriasis patients.

Risk Of Heart Disease In Psoriasis Patients

Psoriasis is an autoimmune condition that leads to the formation of red, scaly patches on the skin. But did you know that this condition can also affect your heart? Studies have shown that people with psoriasis have a higher risk of developing cardiovascular diseases, such as heart attacks and strokes. In fact, the risk of cardiovascular problems is even greater for those with severe psoriasis.

Risk Of Heart Disease In Psoriasis Patients

So, what’s the link between psoriasis and cardiovascular risk? It all comes down to inflammation. Psoriasis is characterized by chronic inflammation in the body, and this inflammation can also damage the blood vessels and the heart. Over time, this can lead to the buildup of plaque in the arteries, a condition known as atherosclerosis, which increases the risk of heart attacks and strokes.

But inflammation isn’t the only culprit. There are several other risk factors in psoriasis and CVD that can contribute to the development of cardiovascular problems. For example, people with psoriasis are more likely to be overweight or obese, have high blood pressure, and have diabetes. These conditions can also increase the risk of heart disease.

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Impact Of Psoriasis Treatment On Cardiovascular Risk

The good news is that treating psoriasis can also have a positive impact on cardiovascular risk. Studies have shown that certain psoriasis treatments, such as biologic drugs, can reduce inflammation in the body and improve heart health. However, it’s important to work closely with your doctor to find the right treatment plan for you.

But treatment isn’t the only way to reduce your risk of cardiovascular problems. Making healthy lifestyle choices can also go a long way in protecting your heart. Below are some of the healthy practices that can help reduce the risk of cardiovascular issues: 

  • Adopt a heart-healthy diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats to reduce inflammation and improve overall cardiovascular health.
  • Engage in regular physical activity, aiming for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week, to maintain a healthy weight, reduce inflammation, and strengthen your heart.
  • Manage stress through relaxation techniques like deep breathing, meditation, yoga, or engaging in hobbies to lower inflammation and reduce the strain on your cardiovascular system.
  • Avoid smoking and limit alcohol consumption, as these habits can contribute to inflammation and increase the risk of heart disease.

Pathogenic Connection Between Psoriasis And Vascular Disease

It’s also important to be aware of the pathogenic connection between psoriasis and vascular disease. Research has shown that the same inflammatory processes that contribute to the development of psoriasis can also damage the blood vessels and increase the risk of cardiovascular problems. This means that even if you don’t have any obvious signs of heart disease, your psoriasis may still be putting your heart at risk.

So, how can you reduce the cardiovascular risk in patients with psoriasis? The first step is to talk to your doctor about your risk factors and what you can do to reduce your risk. Your doctor may recommend healthy lifestyle changes, such as losing weight or quitting smoking, or may prescribe medications to help lower your risk of heart disease.

How To Monitor Your Heart Health?

It’s also important to be vigilant about monitoring your heart health. This may include:

  • Schedule regular check-ups with your primary care physician or cardiologist to assess your overall cardiovascular health and discuss any concerns you may have.
  • Monitor your blood pressure regularly, either at home or during doctor visits, to ensure it stays within a healthy range, as high blood pressure can increase your risk of heart disease.
  • Undergo routine blood tests to check your cholesterol levels, including LDL (“bad”) cholesterol, HDL (“good”) cholesterol, and triglycerides, as abnormal levels can contribute to the development of heart disease.
  • Discuss other relevant tests with your doctor, such as an electrocardiogram (ECG) or stress test, to evaluate your heart’s electrical activity and function, especially if you experience symptoms like chest pain or shortness of breath.
  • Be proactive in addressing any identified risk factors or early signs of heart disease, working with your healthcare team to develop a personalized prevention or treatment plan.

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Conclusion

The cardiovascular risk in patients with psoriasis is a complex topic, but it’s an important one to understand. By being aware of the risks and taking steps to protect your heart, you can help reduce your risk of cardiovascular problems and live a healthier life. Whether it’s through lifestyle changes, medication, or a combination of both, there are many ways to take control of your heart health.

So, if you have psoriasis, don’t ignore your heart. Talk to your doctor, make healthy choices, and be proactive about protecting your cardiovascular health.

Now, we want to hear from you. Have you been diagnosed with psoriasis, and are you concerned about your cardiovascular risk? What steps have you taken to protect your heart health? 

References

NCBI ( n.d) Psoriasis and Cardiovascular Disease: A Narrative Review Available online at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8490176/

JAHA(n.d) Psoriasis and Major Adverse Cardiovascular Events: A Systematic Review and Meta‐Analysis of Observational Studies Available online at: https://www.ahajournals.org/doi/10.1161/JAHA.113.000062

David Mercer

Dr. David Mercer is a board-certified physician in internal medicine and general practice. He has over 20 years of experience working in hospital settings, clinics, and private practice providing comprehensive care to patients.

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