The relative impact of psoriasis and obesity on socioeconomic and medical outcomes in psoriasis patients


  • Conflict of interest

    • The authors have no conflict of interest to declare.
  • Funding sources

    • This study was supported in part by an Alpha Omega Alpha Carolyn L. Kuckein Student Research Fellowship. The funder was not involved in any aspect of the study.



Psoriasis is a chronic, inflammatory skin disorder that is associated with obesity. Independently, both psoriasis and obesity likely impose impressive physical and psychosocial burdens on affected patients.


The purpose of this study was to evaluate the relative impact of body mass index (BMI) on the socioeconomic status, medical co-morbidities, and current and chronic quality of life of psoriasis patients.


Overall, 114 subjects were examined and asked to complete a self-administered questionnaire regarding disabilities, relationships, education, as well as medical and economic outcomes. Participants also answered the ten questions used in the Dermatology Life Quality Index modified to ask ‘over the last week’, ‘over the last year’ and ‘over your lifetime with psoriasis’. Survey responses were compared amongst the three patient groups based on BMI (normal, overweight, obese).


Patients with elevated BMI were more likely to rate their general health lower (P < 0.001), believe that psoriasis caused their weight gain (P = 0.014), experience sleep problems over their lifetime (P = 0.016), hide their psoriasis over their lifetime (P = 0.010), have their self-confidence affected by their psoriasis over their lifetime (P = 0.011) and avoid common activities over their lifetime (P = 0.012).


There are long-term negative effects of elevated BMI that impose additional burdens on psoriasis patients, including impairments in sleep quality and increased social anxiety.