West Houston Dermatology

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New Psoriasis Drugs: What’s Going On?

For patients who suffer from one of the many forms of psoriasis or psoriatic arthritis, learning about future treatments provides some hope of better control, and perhaps one day a cure.  Medical dermatologists such as Stephen Mahoney, M.D., keep their ear to the ground concerning new treatments, including topical treatments, oral treatments, and injectable biologic treatments for psoriasis.  Both patients and their dermatologists must exercise a great deal of patience, because it can take up to 15 years for a new drug to come to market.  Though we all want more psoriasis options now, the US Food & Drug Administration (FDA) sets high standards for a reason – patient health and safety.  Before a new psoriasis drug is cleared for market, the FDA requires that the drug meet all criteria of a Phase I, Phase II, and Phase III studies.  Phase I studies determine if the drug is safe, Phase II studies determine if the drug is efficacious (whether it works), and Phase III examines the drug in larger groups of human patients.  The National Psoriasis Foundation is vigilant in keeping patients and physicians informed about the status of various drugs under investigation.  Right now, the following drugs have made it to Phase III trials:

  • Desoximetasone (topical anti-inflammatory steroid)
  • Apremilast (oral receptor blocker and steroid)
  • AMG 827 (injectable anti-inflammatory and receptor blocker)

Stay tuned to West Houston Dermatology and The National Psoriasis Foundation for updates on psoriasis and its treatment.