Combining Biologic and Phototherapy Treatments Is a Safe and Viable Clinical Strategy for Moderate-to-Severe Psoriasis


Although the efficacy and safety of biologic and phototherapeutic treatments in treating moderate-to-severe psoriasis are well known, not all patients respond well to monotherapy and may require a combination of both types of therapy. There have been few studies investigating the safety and efficacy of combination treatment; now, a review published in the journal Psoriasis Targets and Therapy shows that combination treatment is safe and viable.

The review, entitled “Combining biologic and phototherapy treatments for psoriasis: safety, efficacy, and patient acceptability,” was carried out by a group of researchers in the USA. They conducted an extensive PubMed search for studies that evaluated the safety and efficacy of the combination of biologic and narrowband ultraviolet B (NBUVB) phototherapy to treat moderate-to-severe psoriasis.

In total, 9 out of 10 studies demonstrated favorable efficacy and safety for combining biologic and phototherapy, especially significant because subsets of patients who don’t respond adequately to nonbiologic therapy are commonly encountered.

Lead author Dr Benjamin Farahnik from the University of Vermont College of Medicine said, “Although no regimen involving the combination of a biologic agent and phototherapy has been approved for the management of moderate-to-severe psoriasis, combination therapy appears to be a viable clinical strategy, especially for psoriasis unresponsive to monotherapy. NBUVB in combination with biologics appears to be especially effective.

He continued, “Skilfully combining biologic agents with nonbiologic treatments broadens the armamentum for the long-term control of psoriasis without much increase in risks. Nevertheless, further studies are required to assess the long-term safety and efficacy of such combinations.”

The Psoriasis Targets and Therapy journal is published by Dove Medical Press, an open-access publisher of over 110 medical and scientific journal titles.

Updated 11 August 2016