Long-Term Psoriasis Relief With Enbrel
Reassuring 2-Year Enbrel Data Show Safety, Lasting Psoriasis Effect
WebMD News Archive
Enbrel: Safe & Effective So Far continued...
University of Miami researcher Jonette Keri, MD, PhD, chief of dermatology
at the Miami VA Hospital, says she has patients whose psoriasis flares up
unless she keeps them on the high doses of Enbrel used in the Tyring study.
"This study should give some reassurance to patients that they are not
at any higher risk of cancer if they take Enbrel long term," Keri tells
WebMD. Keri was not involved in the Tyring study but will be one of the
investigators in another long-term study of Enbrel.
Keri notes that patients taking Enbrel should remain alert for symptoms of
any of the drug's rare side effects. Most of these adverse events, she says,
can be identified well before any lasting harm occurs. Side effects include serious infections,
nervous system disorders, and blood disorders.
"We don't know the effects of years of use, but Enbrel has been used to
treat arthritis for years," Keri says.
Tyring notes that about a third of psoriasis patients suffer
psoriasis-associated arthritis. Enbrel, he says, is particularly helpful in
relieving this condition. Keri agrees.
"The good thing is that with the arthritis, patients feel good in a week
or so," she says. "And over the next four or five or six weeks, their
skin catches up and starts to look better. For some people it is absolutely
great. But it is a very expensive medicine, and the higher does will cost
Psoriasis is a chronic skin
condition characterized by thick red, silvery, white skin patches. It often
affects the skin of the scalp, elbows, and knees. Who should take Enbrel
"It is not for everybody, but Enbrel is particularly helpful for
psoriasis patients with joint involvement, those with extensive skin
involvement, those whose psoriasis affects inhibits daily function, and those
who have not had success with other therapies," Tyring says.
Tyring and colleagues report their findings in the June issue of Archives
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