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Patients with Hidradenitis Suppurativa Have Increased Risk of Cardiovascular Disease

Hidradenitis suppurativa (HS), a chronic, inflammatory skin disease, is characterized by painful recurrent, weeping, and malodorous abscesses in areas rich with apocrine sweat glands. In addition to the psychosocial burden and negative effect of HS on quality of life, studies have shown that patients with HS carry a greater systemic inflammatory load, with higher circulating leukocyte counts and C-reactive protein. Therefore, a recent study sought to determine if patients with HS are also at increased risk for CV disease, independent of CV risk factors, due to these shared inflammatory mechanisms.

Researchers looked at 5964 patients with HS without a history of MI or ischemic stroke prior to the study. In a population-based cohort study, patients were matched with 29, 404 controls from the general population. The mean age of the patients with HS was 37.7 years and 72.9% were women.

The study found a significantly increased risk of MI, ischemic stroke, CV-associated death, major adverse CV events (MACEs), and all-cause mortality in patients with HS after adjustment for confounding factors. Risks were similar to that of patients with severe psoriasis; however, compared with the latter group, the risk of CV-associated death was significantly higher in patients with HS. These findings suggest that HS is an independent risk factor for adverse CV outcomes.

These findings are consistent with the accumulating evidence of the association between CV disease and chronic inflammatory conditions. The researchers note that these results call for greater awareness of this association and for studies of its clinical consequences.

Byline: Martha L. Sikes, MS, RPh, PA-C

Posted: March 21, 2016

Source: JAMA Dermatology
Adapted from the original article.

[Image: Wikimedia Commons]

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