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Treatment Found to Reduce Depression in Psoriasis

Last Updated: May 14, 2010.

Treating psoriasis patients with adalimumab is associated with reduced depression and improved quality of life compared to placebo, according to research published in the May issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

FRIDAY, May 14 (HealthDay News) -- Treating psoriasis patients with adalimumab is associated with reduced depression and improved quality of life compared to placebo, according to research published in the May issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

Alan Menter, M.D., of the Baylor Psoriasis Research Institute in Dallas, and colleagues conducted a randomized controlled trial of 96 patients with moderate to severe psoriasis receiving 40 mg every two weeks of adalimumab or placebo to determine the drug's effect on depression symptoms.

In the adalimumab group, the researchers observed a 6.7-point improvement in Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale (ZDS) scores by week 12 or early termination. No significant change was seen in the placebo group. The improvement in depression symptoms correlated with an improvement in Psoriasis Area and Severity Index (PASI) and Dermatology Life Quality Index scores. Patients who had at least a 75 percent reduction in PASI score had greater improvement in ZDS score than those who did not respond to the treatment.

"Although screening for depression symptoms is not commonplace in dermatology practice, appropriate management of psoriasis should include depression screening, with reduction of depression symptoms a treatment goal," the authors conclude.

The study was supported by Abbott Laboratories; several authors disclosed financial ties to Abbott and other pharmaceutical companies.

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