The National Psoriasis Foundation reports that 7.5 million Americans suffer from psoriasis. This staggering number only highlights the need for effective and safe medications to treat this frustrating, embarrassing and uncomfortable condition. Betamethasone Valerate is known as Luxiq, which is marketed by Stiefel and GlaxoSmithKline. As an aerosol foam treatment for patients with scalp psoriasis, betamethasone valerate is unique and easy for patients to use. The patent for Luxiq is set to expire on March 1, 2016, opening up generic avenues for this crucial treatment.
Betamethasone valerate foam has anti-inflammatory, antipruritic, and vasoconstrictive properties. It has been deemed safe and efficacious in many trials. One such trial involved 190 patients with moderate to severe scalp psoriasis. This four-week trial had patients being treated twice a day for the entire four weeks with either betamethasone valerate foam, a placebo foam, a betamethasone valerate lotion or a placebo lotion. At the culmination of this four week trial 159 patients who used betamethasone valerate foam demonstrated visible efficacy in the treatment of their scalp psoriasis, in comparison with the placebo foam. The results that patients experienced using the betamethasone valerate foam were comparable to the betamethasone valerate lotion, which is currently on the market.
At least half of all the people who have psoriasis have it on their scalp. This condition ranges from a mild scalp psoriasis, with fine scaling on the scalp that is very slight. Other patients experience severe psoriasis, including symptoms like thick, crusty plaque covering their entire scalp. Some patients even experience scalp psoriasis beyond their hairline, with symptoms extending to their forehead, back of their neck and around their ears. Scalp psoriasis should not be confused with seborrheic dermatitis, even though it may look similar to this condition. Scalp psoriasis appears as a powdery plaque, with a silvery sheen. Seborrheic dermatitis appears greasy and yellowish.
Betamethasone valerate is effectual for corticosteroid-responsive skin conditions of the scalp, like scalp psoriasis. Upon using betamethasone valerate, patients will experience a reduction in the redness, swelling, and itching associated with their scalp psoriasis condition. This is a hopeful option for psoriasis suffers, as 24 percent of patients with moderate to severe psoriasis report themselves as having depression caused by their condition. According to The National Psoriasis Foundation, psoriasis tends to develop in young people, with the majority of illnesses first occurring for many psoriasis patients between ages 15 and 25. A recent survey of these patients indicated that 84 percent of the people plagued with psoriasis reported regular feelings of anger and frustration with their condition. Emotional well-being is important for all people, and patients afflicted with psoriasis and scalp psoriasis feel that their enjoyment of life is greatly impacted by their disease. Another telling study, reported by the Musculoskeletal Network indicated that 72 percent of Asian, Latin and African-Americans felt that psoriasis limits their ability to enjoy life. In this same study, 62 percent of white patients reported having an impaired emotional well-being due to their psoriasis condition. Hopefully an increased number of generic options are in the near future to help this patient population in need of successful and safe treatment.
- MPR-Monthly Prescribing Reference
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