Severe Psoriasis; penn medicine

Psoriasis Patients Have Higher Risk of Sexual and Erectile Dysfunction Interview with:

Severe Psoriasis; penn medicine

Severe Psoriasis

Alejandro Molina-Leyva, MD PhD
Dermatología, Hospital Universitario Virgen de las Nieves, Granada, Spain What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Psoriasis is a frequent  chronic inflammatory skin disease characterized by the presence of erythematous papulosquamous lesions that can affect any part of the body. The modification of body image and the subjective symptoms associated like itch or even pain can produce an important impairment of quality of life.

Sexuality is a major aspect of life that can be impaired by chronic disease but it is usually an overlooked topic during medical consultations maybe because of lack of knowledge or embarrassment. There is a increasing scientific evidence supporting the relationship between psoriasis and sexual dysfunction.

The aim of our study is to synthesize this scientific evidence in order to help dermatologists to understand the burden of the problem, to identify patients at higher risk and the available therapeutic options. What should readers take away from your report?

Response: Patients with psoriasis present a higher risk of sexual and erectile dysfunction compared to general population. Approximately 50% of patients with psoriasis experience some degree of sexual dysfunction. Anxiety or depression, genital psoriasis or psoriasis arthritis increase the risk of sexual dysfunction among patients with psoriasis, special attention should be given to these patients. The improvement of psoriasis associated with biologic drugs have demonstrated to improve sexual dysfunction.

Psoriasis patients should be inquired about sexual problems during routine consultation, especially those that present risk factors. The presence of sexual or erectile dysfunction could be considered as an additional severity factor  for treatment decision. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this work?

Response: Future research should point towards to investigate the role of systemic inflammation and pro-inflammatory cytokines and psoriasis. We recommend researchers the use specific validated tool to assess sexual dysfunction. Upcoming clinical trials of new drugs for psoriasis should include specific analyses regarding sexual and erectile dysfunction. 


Molina-Leyva A, Salvador-Rodriguez L, Martinez-Lopez A, Ruiz-Carrascosa JC, Arias-Santiago S. Association Between Psoriasis and Sexual and Erectile Dysfunction in Epidemiologic StudiesA Systematic ReviewJAMA Dermatol. Published online October 10, 2018. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2018.3442

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Last Updated on October 11, 2018 by Marie Benz MD FAAD