New campaign highlights the impact psoriasis has on mental health


Psoriasis may be defined as is a skin condition that causes red, flaky, crusty patches of skin covered with silvery scales, but the truth is its impact extends beyond just the skin. The condition can also have detrimental effects on the psyche with patients experiencing social isolation, depression, and anxiety among other things.

Mercedes Diz, Almirall's commercial operations director spoke about how according to a study done in 2012, almost 90% of those with a psoriasis diagnosis claim it has taken an effect on their mental health. One of the main motivators for the campaign is to change the common belief that psoriasis is simply a skin disease, which is what a third of people currently think.

“almost 90% of those with a psoriasis diagnosis claim it has taken an effect on their mental health“

There is often a cycle where high stress levels can cause the psoriasis to get worse, which in turn worsens the patient's anxiety and stress. An example of this would be during the covid pandemic which saw over 40% of patients’ diseases intensify. This may be as a result of treatment setbacks or extra stress.

At the end of October, a new campaign called “Shedding Light on Psoriasis” was started by Almirall, a Spanish pharmaceutical company, with a public service announcement (PSA) and website. This came at the same time as World Psoriasis Day (Friday 29th October) which is in support of the “United – Now act” incentive, actively working to shift public perception of the disease.

There is a comprehensive approach being taken here, with Mercedes Diz saying how “Beyond the skin, there’s a human being, and we need to have an impact there.”

Almirall has worked with Happify Health previously this year to create an online wellness program called “Claro”. The mission is to help those with chronic diseases and perform a study to observe how its monoclonal antibody drug (tildrakizumab) could positively impact the overall health of those suffering with psoriasis.

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