West Houston Dermatology

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Biologic Treatment For Plaque Psoriasis in Houston: Stelara®

Treatments for plaque psoriasis at this time are limited to topical creams, phototherapy, and systemic medications including biologics.  One biologic treatment is Stelara®, which is a prescription medication (delivered by injection) approved by the FDA to treat adults 18 years and older who have moderate to severe plaque psoriasis appearing over large areas of the body, or many areas of the body.  Though researchers are not 100% certain what causes plaque psoriasis, there is an autoimmune component to the disorder.  Stelara® works by focusing on the body’s immune system – specifically by inhibiting two proteins called interleukin 12 (IL-12) and interleukin 23 (IL-23) that are thought to be involved with plaque psoriasis.  There are clinical studies reporting that patients taking Stelara® experience a significant amount of clearance.  However, there are not studies available at present on the safety and efficacy of Stelara® following two years of usage.  Treatment with this medication involves injection of the appropriate does of the medication with two starter doses:  one given at initial treatment (week 0) and the 2nd given at week 4.  After these initial does, the patient makes an appointment to have the remaining injections every 12 weeks.  Stelara® is not the only biologic treatment for plaque psoriasis, but Dr. Mahoney likes to highlight available treatments through his blog.