Increased cardiovascular risk in psoriasis

Persons with psoriasis have almost doubled likelihood of having a cluster of cardiovascular risk factors, according to Ingrid Snekvik‘s PhD thesis.


  1. Obesity and high abdominal fat mass seem to double the risk of psoriasis.
  2. Psoriasis is linked to adiposity and a clustering of risk factors for cardiovascular disease.
  3. The metabolic syndrome is also linked to increased risk of future psoriasis.


Thesis: Psoriasis and cardiovascular disease risk factors. The HUNT Study, Norway
Candidate: Ingrid Snekvik
Time: June 20, 2018 at 12:15
Place: St. Olavs Hospital: Norwegian Brain Centre, Auditorium MTA
Link to university website (in Norwegian)


(1/3) Higher body mass index, waist circumference, waist-hip ratio and weight change over ten years are associated with significantly increased risk of incident psoriasis. Obesity is associated with almost doubled risk compared to normal weight. 33 734 participants from the second wave of the Nord-Trøndelag Health Study (HUNT) in were included, of which 369 developed psoriasis before participating in the third wave of HUNT eleven years later.

Snekvik has also been involved in a recent systematic review and dose-response meta-analysis, confirming these results. Seven studies were included in the meta-analysis, including two from Norway.

(2) Blood pressure and blood lipds showed no clear association with psoriasis. However, participants with a clustering of cardiovascular risk factors consistent with the metabolic syndrome, had almost doubled likelihood of having psoriasis. Objective measures of body mass index, waist circumference and high-sensitivity C-reactive protein were also associated with psoriasis. The study sample consisted of more than 50 000 participants from the HUNT3 study, and the associations were strongest for people with moderate and severe psoriasis.

(4) Metabolic syndrome is associated with 66 % increased risk of future psoriasis. High waist circumference and BMI accounts for part of the association, but after adjustments the risk was still increased by 33 %. Some of the risk factors constituting the metabolic syndrome, namely waist circumference, triglycerides and HDL cholesterol, were also independently associated with future psoriasis risk. The study followed 35 000 adults from Nord-Trøndelag between HUNT2 and HUNT3.


(1) Snekvik, I., Smith, C. H., Nilsen, T. I., Langan, S. M., Modalsli, E. H., Romundstad, P. R., & Saunes, M. (2017). Obesity, waist circumference, weight change, and risk of incident psoriasis: Prospective data from the HUNT studyJournal of Investigative Dermatology137(12), 2484-2490.

(2) Snekvik, I., Nilsen, T. I. L., Romundstad, P. R., & Saunes, M. (2018). Psoriasis and cardiovascular disease risk factors: the HUNT Study, Norway. Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology32(5), 776-782.

(3) Aune, D., Snekvik, I., Schlesinger, S., Norat, T., Riboli, E., & Vatten, L. J. (2018). Body mass index, abdominal fatness, weight gain and the risk of psoriasis: a systematic review and dose–response meta-analysis of prospective studies.

(4) Snekvik, I., Nilsen, T. I. L., Romundstad, P. R., & Saunes, M. (2018) Metabolic syndrome and risk of incident psoriasis: prospective data from the HUNT Study, NorwayBritish Journal of Dermatology.

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