BACKGROUND: Psoriasis impairs the quality of life of approximately 7.5 million Americans and is associated with serious comorbidities. Because of chronic vascular access and epidermal dysfunction, end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients with psoriasis may be at greater risk for infection, and psoriasis treatment could affect this risk.
METHODS: A retrospective cohort analysis was performed using the United States Renal Data System from 2004-2011 to investigate the association of psoriasis with infections common to ESRD patients, as well as the effect of psoriasis treatment on infection risk as well as mortality.
RESULTS: A total of 8,911 psoriasis patients were identified. Psoriasis was associated with a significantly increased risk for all queried infections, especially cellulitis (adjusted relative risk = 1.55), conjunctivitis (1.47), and onychomycosis (1.36). Psoriasis treatment (systemic, local, and light) was associated with a significantly decreased risk of some infections. Psoriasis treatment was also correlated with a significantly decreased risk of mortality, with systemic therapies (biologics and other immunosuppressants) showing the greatest reduction (adjusted hazard ratio = 0.55).
CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that psoriasis-ESRD patients may have an increased risk of infection and treatment of psoriasis is associated with a reduced risk of some infections and improved survival.