If you suffer from both skin rashes and migraine, you’re not alone. And there may be an important connection between the two which we need to research.
Psoriasis (the “p” is silent) is a common skin disease, probably affecting about 1-2% of the population. There are various types of psoriasis, but it often shows up as red, scaly patches of skin. It can also show up in nails, or even as stiff joints. It flares up at various times, and can be either a small annoyance or a major condition.
Psoriasis can run in families, but it can also be brought on through an infection, obesity, and smoking.
A recent study in Italy found that people with psoriasis, women especially, were extremely likely to also suffer from migraine. Most often this was migraine with aura, but migraine without aura showed up very often as well.
Why the connection, and why should we care? Well, researchers suspect a biological relationship between the two, but further research will need to be done. Migraine is often associated with autoimmune diseases such as psoriasis, so in a way this isn’t a surprise.
But perhaps the biggest concern that researchers had is the link between both psoriasis and migraine – and heart diseases. Psoriasis itself, and perhaps even some of its treatments, can significantly increase the risk of high blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, and stroke, for example. Migraine also increases your risk of cardiovascular disease. So having both may increase your risk even further.
Be sure you tell your doctor if you notice symptoms of psoriasis. There are helpful treatments. You may want to especially consider having some good tests done on your levels of vitamin D. Omega-3 supplements may also be helpful for both migraine and psoriasis. You will also want to take a look at your risk of heart disease (read Migraine and Heart Disease: 7 Critical Things to Know Now).
There are a wide variety of treatments for psoriasis, as there are for migraine. Your doctor will help you decide which are best for you. Being aware of both diseases will help you assess symptoms and find treatments that work.
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