Psoriasis Clinical Trials – Why everyone can (and should) help.

[fullwidth background_color=”” background_image=”” background_parallax=”none” enable_mobile=”no” parallax_speed=”0.3″ background_repeat=”no-repeat” background_position=”left top” video_url=”” video_aspect_ratio=”16:9″ video_webm=”” video_mp4=”” video_ogv=”” video_preview_image=”” overlay_color=”” overlay_opacity=”0.5″ video_mute=”yes” video_loop=”yes” fade=”no” border_size=”0px” border_color=”” border_style=”” padding_top=”20″ padding_bottom=”20″ padding_left=”0″ padding_right=”0″ hundred_percent=”no” equal_height_columns=”no” hide_on_mobile=”no” menu_anchor=”” class=”” id=””][one_full last=”yes” spacing=”yes” center_content=”no” hide_on_mobile=”no” background_color=”” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” background_position=”left top” border_size=”0px” border_color=”” border_style=”” padding=”” margin_top=”” margin_bottom=”” animation_type=”” animation_direction=”” animation_speed=”0.1″ class=”” id=””][fusion_text]When we talk about psoriasis, we are usually referring to it as a skin condition- the inflamed, flaky patches or ‘plaques’ which most often form on the hands, scalp and in the creases of joints. But over and above this, psoriasis is an incurable, inflammatory disease which affects a sufferer’s entire system, and often takes a profound toll on patients’ mental health. A new study at Covance Leeds aims to make the condition easier to manage.

skin cells close up texture When a person has psoriasis, they produce skin cells ten times faster than average. This results in the formation on thick plaques of inflamed, red skin, which can often have a flaky top layer of dead and dying skin cells. As well as being irritating, psoriasis plaques can be painful and intensely itchy. Psoriasis patients can find it hard to sleep or to complete basic daily tasks during a ‘flare up’.

If that wasn’t enough to contend with, psoriasis is a systemic disease which is more than just skin deep. Psoriatics have around a 30% chance of going on to develop psoriatic arthritis, which causes pain and swelling in the joints and spine, and has similar symptoms to rheumatoid arthritis.

There also appears to be a connection between psoriasis and a variety of other diseases. There is a 27% higher incidence of diabetes in psoriasis patients. A higher than average proportion of psoriatics develop Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis, as well as several different types of cancer.

psoriasis lonely left out

Even without these potential complications, psoriasis is often very damaging to a patient’s mental health. In a society where image counts for so much, the outwardly-apparent nature of psoriasis can have a crippling effect on self-esteem. There is also a persistent misconception that psoriasis is a contagious rash (it categorically ISN’T), which means that patients can be isolated or ostracized from a very young age. It is hardly surprising that many psoriatics suffer from depression; and tragically, a high number of psoriatics have reported having suicidal thoughts.

pills oral pink red Currently, there is no cure for psoriasis, but there is hope in the form of a new treatment  which is being developed at Covance. This new drug works in a similar way to therapies which are already available, but it is believed to be more effective and safer than the other drugs which are currently on the market. This means that it may be possible to treat psoriasis effectively with a smaller dose, and with a lower risk of side effects.

To help us with this study, we are looking for men and women aged 18-65 with moderate to severe psoriasis who are able to attend a 3 day stay at our clinic in Leeds and 8 outpatient visits. For taking part in this study, volunteers will be paid £1930. Interested? Click here to become a volunteer.

Even if you are not a psoriasis patient, if you are over 18, and would like to help us develop new treatments for psoriasis and a host of other illnesses, click here to apply.