Association between psoriasis and viral infections in the United States: focusing on hepatitis B, hepatitis C and human immunodeficiency virus


  • Conflict of interest
    The authors declare no relevant conflict of interest pertaining to this manuscript.

  • Funding source

  • Financial disclosures
    No relevant financial conflict of interest. AWA has served as investigator and consultant to Abbott, Amgen and Janssen.

  • Prior presentation
    This manuscript has not been previously published and is not under consideration in the same or substantially similar form in any other peer-reviewed media.

A.W. Armstrong.


Background  No published data in the U.S. population regarding an association between viral infections and psoriasis are currently available. Assessment of infection and immunosuppression risk is critical in managing psoriasis patients.

Objectives  To examine the association between psoriasis and viral infections including hepatitis B, hepatitis C and human immunodeficiency viral infections in the general U.S. population.

Methods  Population data representative of the U.S. cohort were analysed from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), 2003–2006. Hepatitis B, hepatitis C, and human immunodeficiency antibodies status were ascertained from laboratory evaluations. Univariate and multivariate analyses were performed to assess the associations between psoriasis and these viral infections.

Results  Among 6532 participants aged 20–59 years who provided responses to their psoriasis status, 162 patients reported having psoriasis. Based on multivariate regression analyses, psoriasis was not significantly associated with positive serology for hepatitis B core [odds ratio (OR), 0.83; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.32–2.17; = 0.7060], hepatitis B surface [OR, 7.89; CI, 0.52–119; = 0.1355], hepatitis C [OR, 0.24; CI, 0.03–2.01; = 0.1915], or human immunodeficiency virus [OR, 0.73; CI, 0.09–5.93; = 0.7646] antibodies, after adjusting for age, gender, race and smoking status.

Conclusions  From the limited sample of the NHANES database on psoriasis and viral infections, psoriasis does not appear to be associated with an increased risk of hepatitis B, hepatitis C, or HIV infection in the U.S. population. Epidemiology of these viral infections in psoriasis needs to be continually studied and updated given their importance in management considerations.