Is There A Link between Psoriasis and Cancer?

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Long-term researches of psoriasis are required to help find the clearly answer of whether the disease itself with /without its treatments has a link in increasing the risk of some forms of cancer.


Common types of cancer in psoriasis

While the link between psoriasis and cancer is still debatable, some treatments for the disease have been linked to a greater risk of cancer.

For instance, sufferers who take cyclosporine after PUVA (ultraviolet light A used with psoralen) have a greater incidence of squamous cell skin cancer. The greatest risks occur with previous & long-term use of PUVA, methotrexate, or other medicines that suppress the immune system.

Moreover, some studies also found that the use of biologics to treat psoriasis might be linked to high risk of developing squamous cell carcinoma and lymphoma.

What is lymphoma?

It is a kind of cancer that affects the lymphatic system that includes bone marrow, spleen, lymph nodes, and thymus glands. However, there is a chance for the problem to also affect other organs of throughout the body.


It occurs when there are changes in the genes of a lymphocyte, which then this interferes with cells division & cell death. There are many forms of lymphoma, but in general it has two major forms; non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

Some health conditions have been confirmed can increase the risk of lymphoma, particularly those that interfere with the body immune system such as HIV /AIDS.

What is squamous cell carcinoma?

As the name suggests, it comes from abnormal cells that grow in the squamous cells (they are essential cells for your skin, even most cells of your epidermis are squamous cells).

It is often associated with chronic excessive exposure to sun light. Therefore, it is more common in tropical areas. However, people with a history of substantial sunlight exposure are at high risk.

If you have psoriasis, it’s recommended to take routine health screenings, practice healthy lifestyles, and avoid high-risk habits (such as abusing alcohol an smoking) to prevent the complications of the disease such as the risk of cancer.


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