Yes, it seems that psoriasis discriminates on the ground of sex! A nationwide study in Sweden supports the long-held, but unproven notion, that men are more prone to developing severe psoriasis than women.
Swedish researchers used the Psoriasis Area and Severity Index (PASI) score to measure disease severity in 5438 registered patients with moderate to severe psoriasis (PsoReg).
PASI is a combined score of psoriasis measurements in four areas: the head, arms, trunk, and legs. Scoring is based on three parameters: degree of erythema, or redness; induration, or thickness of the scarring; and desquamation, or scaling.
The researchers observed that women had statistically significant lower median PASI scores than men, 5.4 versus 7.3. The tendency held regardless of age.
The team also discovered that the scores of three of the four body areas that were analyzed—arms, trunk, and legs—were significantly higher in men than women. The exception was the head.
By investigating, for the first time, the influence of gender on the severity of psoriasis by using the gold standard of severity measurements—the PASI score—and the distinct elements of the PASI score, the authors were able to corroborate the hypothesis that women have less severe psoriasis compared with men in a nationwide population.
- Hägg D, Sundström A, Eriksson M, Schmitt-Egenolf M. Severity of Psoriasis Differs Between Men and Women: A Study of the Clinical Outcome Measure Psoriasis Area and Severity Index (PASI) in 5438 Swedish Register Patients.American Journal of Clinical Dermatology, 2017; 18(4): 583–590.