Psychosocial burden and body mass index are associated with dermatology-related quality of life in psoriasis patients



Scientific evidence indicates that inflammatory processes may be involved in the progression of both psoriasis and depression via elevated peripheral proinflammatory cytokines.


The aim of our study was to assess the association among psychological burden, depressive symptoms and proinflammatory mediators in psoriasis patients.

Materials and Methods

Forty psoriasis patients were recruited from the Department of Dermatology, University Hospital Essen. In addition to the Psoriasis Area and Severity Index (PASI), mental and physical health were explored using different questionnaires. Furthermore, proinflammatory cytokines were analysed.


Patients in the high PASI group showed reduced Dermatology Life Quality Index (DLQI), higher body mass index (BMI), elevated CRP levels as well as impaired physical aspects of quality of life. Regression analyses revealed that somatic and anxiety symptoms accounted for more than 32% of the variance in DLQI, independent of PASI and cytokine levels.


The data indicate somatic and anxiety symptoms, as well as BMI, to be closely linked to dermatology-related quality of life.

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Corresponding author

Correspondence to Wiebke Sondermann.

Additional information


Financial support from pharmaceutical industries or any other source: none.

Conflicts of interest

Wiebke Sondermann received travel expenses for attending meetings and/or (speaker) honoraria from Abbvie, Almirall, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Celgene, Janssen, LEO Pharma, Lilly, MSD, Novartis, Pfizer, Roche, Sanofi Genzyme and UCB. Andreas Körber received travel expenses for attending meetings and/or speaker honoraria from MSD, Pfizer, Biogen, Abbvie, Novartis, LEO Pharma, Janssen, Celgene, Lilly, Almirall, Beiersdorf and Grünenthal. Oliver Fiege received travel expenses for attending meetings and/or (speaker) honoraria from AstraZeneca, Janssen-Cilag, Lilly, Otsuka, Pfizer and Takeda. Norbert Scherbaum received honoraria for several activities (advisory boards, lectures, manuscripts) from AbbVie, Hexal, Janssen-Cilag, MSD, Medice, Mundipharma, Reckitt-Benckiser/Indivior, and Sanofi-Aventis. During the last three years, he participated in clinical trials financed by the pharmaceutical industry. The other authors report no conflicts of interest.

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Sondermann, W., Schreiber, A., Körber, A. et al. Psychosocial burden and body mass index are associated with dermatology-related quality of life in psoriasis patients. Eur J Dermatol 30, 140–147 (2020).

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Key words

  • depression
  • PHQ
  • proinflammatory cytokines
  • psoriasis
  • psychological burden
  • SF-36