(HealthDay News) — Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection may affect the severity of psoriasis, according to a study published online March 23 in the International Journal of Dermatology.

Anna Campanati, MD, from Polytechnic Marche University in Ancona, Italy, and colleagues screened 210 psoriasis patients and 150 healthy controls for H. pylori through [13C] urea breath test at baseline. Those infected with H. pylori were treated with a one-week triple therapy plus standardized phototherapy treatment (for all psoriasis patients). All were re-evaluated four weeks later at the end of therapy (T5).

The researchers found that the prevalence of H. pylori was not higher in psoriasis vs. the control group (20.27 and 22%, respectively; P>0.05), but patients infected with H. pylori showed more severe psoriasis than uninfected patients (psoriasis area and severity index score: 17.9 vs. 13.7; P=0.04). Patients who were successfully treated for H. pylori infection showed a greater psoriasis improvement, compared to the others (psoriasis area and severity index score at T5: 8.36 vs. 10.85; P=0.006).

“Patients with mild to severe psoriasis do not show a greater prevalence of H. pylori infection; however, H. pylori seems able to affect the clinical severity of psoriasis,” the authors write.

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