92% of psoriasis sufferers reject steroids – the standard NHS treatment
17th October 2019.
NINE-tenths of psoriasis patients who are routinely treated with steroid creams by their doctors would rather not use them.
Topical corticosteroids – which reduce inflammation but can cause skin damage over time – are usually the first item GPs reach for in their armoury.
However, a survey of psoriasis sufferers has found that an overwhelming majority of them would prefer to be treated without steroids – especially if a non-steroid treatment worked just as well.
The survey was conducted by FRANKL Pharma, distributors of Soratinex, a treatment for plaque psoriasis that does not contain steroids. More than 320 Soratinex users responded to the survey, which found that:
· After using Soratinex, patients reported an average 74 per cent reduction in their symptoms.
· 92 per cent of respondents said given similar outcomes, they would prefer a non-steroid treatment to one that contained steroids – yet 73 per cent had been given them by their doctors.
· 70 per cent reported significant improvements within 3 weeks of first using Soratinex.
· The average reported improvement in quality of life was 71 per cent.
· 89 per cent would recommend Soratinex to other sufferers.
· Asked to describe the treatment using a word of their own choice, the top five words chosen were ‘Effective’, ‘Good’, ‘Amazing’, ‘Excellent’ and ‘Great’.
‘The fact that Soratinex does not contain corticosteroids is particularly exciting because a lot of patients are scared of their long-term use - and if they aren’t then they should be,’ says dermatology Professor Anthony Chu, who conducted successful UK clinical trials on Soratinex in 2017.
‘Prolonged use of topical steroids can be very damaging to the skin, resulting in thinning and fragility. Because they can be absorbed, in some cases they can cause changes in blood pressure and internal side effects, including decreased growth in children and Cushing’s Syndrome.’
Andy Taylor, 53, from Huntingdon, Cambs, was one of 322 people who responded to the survey. He says: ‘It’s crazy that we’re expected to use steroids when we don’t want to and most doctors would rather not prescribe them. None of them really worked for me in more than 40 years. Then I found Soratinex, which doesn’t contain steroids, and now I’m 80 per cent clear in just a few weeks.’
Judith Kovacs, FRANKL Pharma CEO, said: ‘It’s very sad that patients are having to use treatments that they would really rather avoid. We’re pleased to be able to offer an alternative that has been proven in clinical trials across Europe and in the UK to be at least as effective as corticosteroids and often better.’
NOTES FOR EDITORS:
· Soratinex is a three-step treatment comprising a gel, cream and oil that is applied topically. It is available online from www.franklpharma.co.uk
· Psoriasis is an auto-immune condition that speeds up the skin replacement process, meaning cells that normally take 21 to 28 days to replace are actually produced in a few days. This build-up of cells results in raised ‘plaques’ which can become inflamed, flaky and painful. It can occur on all parts of the body.
· Almost 2 million people in the UK suffer from the condition.
· Most sufferers are treated with topical creams containing steroids. However, over time these can damage the skin and in some cases are absorbed into the body, causing side effects such as changes in blood pressure and decreased growth in children.