Psoriasis is a skin disorder in which there is drastic increase in the growth rate of skin cells that eventually accumulate in large number on the superficial skin. This causes formation of red patches and scaly marks on the topmost layer of the skin. This is an autoimmune disease in which the infection fighting cells of the immune system attack the skin, resulting in abnormal production of skin cells.
New treatment for this skin condition involves use of injections that have shown positive results in various clinical studies. New drugs taken in injectable form are found to be more effective in treating this skin problem. These new drugs are referred to as biologics that are obtained from a living source. Biologics are primarily made up of proteins that are outsourced from living organisms. The best example of biologics are vaccines that contain live bacteria or virus, which help to prevent the occurrence of infections.
Biologics that are used to treat this skin condition are Stelara, Enbrel, Humira, and Remicade. Basically, these biologics try to suppress the immune system that has turned 'wild' during this condition. Studies show that when conventional treatment doesn't help, biologics have found to be effective to alleviate psoriasis substantially. Biologics effectively attack the T cells of the immune system that are responsible for causing skin problems and joint inflammation. Off all the biologics, Stelara is found to be the most effective in treating this skin condition. According to a study, approximately 800 patients suffering from moderate to severe psoriasis were divided into 2 groups. While the first group was put on low and high doses of Stelara, the second group was given Enbrel. The outcome that was analyzed after a period of 3 months proved Stelara to be a better alternative to Enbrel. Those taking Stelara showed greater improvement in their symptoms as compared to patients who received Enbrel.
One may think that although studies reveal these biologics to be more effective than the usually prescribed one, can they be considered safe? The good news is that these injectable biologics have received FDA approval, which means they can be used in treating this skin problem safely.
Corticosteroids creams, topical retinoids as well as other medications like anthralin form an integral part of scalp psoriasis treatment. If this doesn't work, then stronger medications are prescribed which are either taken orally or administered intravenously. Unfortunately, the sad news is that most of them provide temporary relief. Also, taking these powerful medications for a longer duration can put a person in the risk zone of some serious side effects. Moreover, these topical products are not very effective to treat severe cases of psoriasis.
T cells are the soldiers of the body that protect it from viral or bacterial attack. However, as biologics impair the immune system by targeting the T cells, patients put on these medications have higher chances of developing infections. So, one has to very careful when taking these new medicines. Excess dosage can cause serious side effects and further complicate matters.
So, if the use of topical products is driving you crazy, with no sign of improvement, it is time you talk to your doctor and explore switching over to these injectable biologics.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.