The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog is intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at www.Vicus.com, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

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    Weight lose and the response to psoriasis treatment

     There’s evidence that obesity (among other factors) increases the risk for developing psoriasis.

    But do obese psoriasis patients who lose weight respond better to pharmacologic treatment?

    First, the details.

    • 61 patients with moderate-to-severe chronic plaque psoriasis and a BMI of greater than 30 were randomly assigned to a treatment group for 24 weeks.
      • Low dose cyclosporine (Sandimmune) + a low-calorie diet
      • Low dose cyclosporine alone (control group)
    • The patients knew their treatment; the researchers did not — single blind.
    • The response to treatment was measured using the Psoriasis Area and Severity Index (PASI) score.
      • A PASI of 75 is the benchmark for most studies of psoriasis.

    And, the results.

    • At week 24, the average reduction in body weight was 7% with cyclosporine + a low-calorie diet vs no change with cyclosporine alone — a significant difference.
    • The PASI 75 response was achieved by 67% of patients treated with cyclosporine + a low-calorie diet vs 29% of patients treated with cyclosporine alone — a significant difference.

    The bottom line?
    The authors concluded, “Lifestyle modifications, including a low-calorie diet, may supplement the pharmacologic treatment of obese psoriasis patients.”

    4/2/09 22:40 JR

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