Moving From Desperation to Hope

By Greg Dean
Updated 2024-03-24 14:16:17 | Published 2022-11-13 03:35:20
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    • In the Psoriatic Arthritis section of the iMedix Blog, delve into topics around this inflammatory arthritis linked to psoriasis. Find information on symptoms, diagnosis, treatment options, and living tips, providing valuable support for patients and their caregivers.

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Before 1999, patients with severe psoriatic arthritis had a sense of inevitability since any damage to their joints was irreversible. The prospect of needing surgeries and rehabilitation was daunting, and the extent of the damage was uncertain.

Move From Desperation to Hope – Two Minute Message

Disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs) could alleviate pain, but did not change the disease's course for many patients. I attended a conference in the early 2000s where a significant number of attendees used assistive devices, which highlighted the hopelessness surrounding psoriatic arthritis. However, a few years later, the number of individuals using assistive devices decreased, indicating a significant change.

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Dermatologists and rheumatologists attributed this change to the introduction of biologic drugs, which prevented joint damage. With the introduction of biologics and new drugs based on genetic studies, the mindset of psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis patients shifted from hopelessness to hopefulness. These drugs have shown effective results in treating a majority of patients. While older patients may not be able to reverse their joint damage, further destruction and damage can be mitigated.

Both the American Academy of Dermatology and the American College of Rheumatology have adopted guidelines emphasizing early diagnosis and treatment. The introduction of biologics has also resulted in a decrease in knee and hip replacement surgeries for arthritis patients. The future challenge lies in ensuring access to biologic drugs for all psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis patients.

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