ANYONE SUFFERING FROM PSORIASIS KNOWS THE PAINFUL CYCLE AND THE DISCOMFORT ASSOCIATED WITH THE DISEASE. BUT WITH THE HELP OF BIOLOGIC THERAPY—A CUTTING-EDGE PSORIASIS TREATMENT, THE BODY’S OWN IMMUNE SYSTEM ACTUALLY FIGHTS THE DISEASE. DERMATOLOGIST DR. ARIEL HAUS TELLS MORE ABOUT THE TREATMENT.
Psoriasis, explains Dr. Haus, is a common skin ailment that accelerates the life cycle of skin cells. In this condition, cells build up rapidly on the surface of the skin, and these extra skin
cells form scales and red patches that are often painful and itchy.
As psoriasis is a chronic disease that often comes and goes, Dr. Haus elaborates that biologic therapy is designed to stimulate or restore the ability of the body’s immune system to fight infection and disease. “Other drugs are made from plants or chemicals, whereas biologics are made from proteins which target the immune system in a much more specific way,” he says, and these target the immune response that leads to the rapid skin cell growth characteristic of psoriasis.
According to Dr. Haus, biologic therapies involve the use of substances called biological response modifiers (BRMs). The body usually produces these in small amounts, but through technology, they can be used in large amounts to treat conditions such as cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, and Crohn’s disease. Biologic therapy is used to treat chronic diseases and can be life changing for many people, he says, adding, “The treatment is ongoing and patients mustn’t be tempted to stop or their condition will deteriorate again.”
As with any treatment, Dr. Haus points out that there are downsides. “Because biologic therapy affects the immune system, it may compromise its ability to fight infection and disease,” he tells, but this would be closely monitored by the overseeing doctor.
This is a revolutionary treatment for patients’ suffering with chronic diseases such as psoriasis and arthritis, explains Dr. Haus. “It is minimally invasive as it is simple to administer and does not require surgical intervention,” he notes, “the treatment protocol is tailored to each patient and the dosage and frequency very much depends on the patient.” It is not uncommon for a doctor to prescribe one dose per week for the first five weeks and then once a month thereafter. However, for some patients it may just be monthly treatments that are needed.