Humira Improves Life With Psoriasis
Study Shows Dramatic Improvement in Moderate and Severe Psoriasis
The newly updated data on Humira, from a trial sponsored by manufacturer Abbott Laboratories, was presented last week in New York City at the summer meeting of the American Academy of Dermatology.
Patients who had received 40 mg injections of the drug every two weeks for three months continued on the treatment for a total of six months. Others who had been started on a placebo injection were switched to the active drug.
Researchers reported that 64% of patients who got the twice-monthly injections achieved at least a 75% improvement in disease severity at six months. Significant improvements in quality of life were also recorded, with 40% of patients on the treatment reporting that their quality of life was "not at all" affected by their skin condition.
National Psoriasis Foundation spokesman Michael Paranzino tells WebMD that as effective as the biologics are, they will not replace traditional therapies for all patients.
"The biologics hold the promise of potentially fewer side effects, but the exciting thing is that we now have many more treatment options than we have had in the past," he says. "There is no one drug that is clearly superior and will work for everyone, but the good news is that most patients can be helped with treatment."
August is Psoriasis Awareness Month, and Paranzino says a goal is to convince people who abandoned treatment or never started it to see their doctors and learn about the therapeutic advances.
"We want to get the message out to people who were frustrated with earlier treatments or couldn't take them because of other medical conditions that there are a lot of new options out there," he says.