New Hope For Psoriasis Sufferers

Warm weather normally means a return to shorts and T-shirts and relaxing trips to the beach, but for the millions of Americans with psoriasis, it can be a more stressful time of the year.

Psoriasis is a noncontagious disease of the immune system that causes red, scaly patches to develop on some or all areas of the skin. According to the National Psoriasis Foundation, close to five million adults in the U.S. have psoriasis, and up to 260,000 are diagnosed every year. The disease can be painful and disabling, both physically and emotionally.

There is no cure for psoriasis, but there is a variety of therapies available to improve and reduce its symptoms. Treatment approaches include creams or ointments for the skin, exposing the skin to light therapy, and oral and injectable treatments. Research indicates that more than 70 percent of patients are not completely satisfied with their current treatment.

A new therapy called Taclonex (calcipotriene 0.005% and betamethasone dipropionate 0.064%) may offer new hope to psoriasis patients. Most people are candidates for topical therapies that are applied to the skin. These are usually the first line of defense in managing the disease. Taclonex is an ointment that combines two widely used ingredients for slowing down excessive skin-cell growth, and for reducing the inflammation and redness associated with psoriasis. The treatment only needs to be applied once a day, and was found in clinical studies to be more effective and tolerable than its individual ingredients alone.

“Taclonex is a very promising new treatment option for people with psoriasis,” said Mark Lebwohl, MD, Chairman of the Department of Dermatology at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine. “It is rapidly effective, with most patients experiencing improvement within the first week of use,” said Dr. Lebwohl.

The most common side effect experienced with Taclonex involved irritation of the skin.

If you have psoriasis or are experiencing symptoms of psoriasis, seek the advice of a dermatologist who can recommend appropriate therapy.

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