Research suggests there is a bi-directional relationship between psoriasis and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). This relationship was stronger in individuals younger than 40 years of age.
The authors of the study, published in Frontiers in Immunology (Feb. 16, 2022), note that there have been studies that show an association between psoriasis and later development of NAFLD. The two conditions also share a common pathogenic pathway. However, the investigators note that the existing studies were limited by small sample sizes and cross-sectional design.
The authors conducted a population-based longitudinal cohort study. Data were retrieved from Taiwan’s National Health Insurance Research Database. Patients with new-onset NAFLD and psoriasis were respectively enrolled in two cohorts and matched with controls. The investigators then calculated the hazard ratios for members of each cohort for developing the other condition.
They found that the risk of patients with new-onset NAFLD later developing psoriasis was statistically significant compared to the controls. Younger patients (less than 40 years of age) with NAFLD had a 1.3-fold higher risk of later development of psoriasis than older patients.
The risk of patients with new-onset psoriasis developing NAFLD in the future was 1.28-fold higher than that of patients without psoriasis, and patients younger than 40 years of age were at a higher risk than those in older subgroups.
This observed correlation between the two diseases and the subsequent risk of disease development should be considered when caring for patients, the authors conclude.