When we hear the word “psoriasis”, we tend to think about itchy skin, which is one of the main symptoms of the skin disease.
Many people do not initially think of thyroid disease having any connection with psoriasis, but studies show that there is a need to be concerned, as having psoriasis can lead to a higher risk of having thyroid disease.
Psoriasis is a chronic skin disease usually associated with having scaly, often itchy, patches of skin. It is common among many, with 3 million cases annually in the United States (US).
According to the research in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology (JAAD), psoriasis in adults in the US is in fact connected to an increased risk for thyroid dysfunction. How are the two possibly connected?
Psoriasis could increase thyroid disease with links to conditions that affect the thyroid, which is a gland located in the neck right above the collarbone. Studies have shown that this connection seems to be more frequent and higher in women when psoriasis, or any other autoimmune disease, is present.
Other autoimmune diseases that have been connected to psoriasis include alopecia areata, celiac disease, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, and scleroderma. Diabetes and obesity, which are particularly higher in Black people and linked to the thyroid, are also associated with psoriasis.
In looking at the function of the thyroid, it is important to know what it is and what it does. Your thyroid, a butterfly-shaped gland, makes hormones and regulates your heart and digestive functions, bone maintenance, brain development, the burning of calories, muscle control, and your mood. Some tend to have underactive thyroid glands, while some have overactive glands.
Data from 2009 to 2014 on 15,582 people over the age of 20 years old shows that the odds of having thyroid disease were increased for all adult psoriasis patients, and psoriasis was also associated with higher odds of thyroid dysfunction.