What is Psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a serious inflammatory, non-communicable autoimmune disease that has no known cause and cure. Psoriasis carries severe physical, mental and socio-economic burden. It affects an estimated 1 to 2% of Filipinos or between 1 to 2 million of the Philippine population. Around 125 millions are believed to be suffering from psoriasis worldwide.
Physically, psoriasis is uncomfortable, itchy and painful with inflamed, cracked and bleeding lesions. People with psoriasis are embarrassed, humiliated and tend to hide their skin from the critical public who are uninformed about psoriasis. Psoriasis is often mistaken for contagious diseases like leprosy, syphilis and even HIV/AIDs. Psoriasis may lead to alcoholism, severe depression and suicidal ideation brought about by shame and frustration.
Burden of the disease – the Overwhelming Impact!
The real danger of psoriasis lies beneath the surface of the skin lesions. It has been published in several scientific papers that psoriasis is closely related with other life-threatening, non-communicable and chronic diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, lupus, obesity among others and can result in early death.
Being in a developing country with less resources and healthcare, many Filipinos with psoriasis have little-to-no access to proper treatments and medications. Many psoriasis patients are either misdiagnosed or undiagnosed. Given this scenario, Filipinos who suffer from psoriasis are exposed to more risks and dangers.