Psoriasis may increase risk for diabetes, according to new research presented at the annual meeting of the European Society of Cardiology.

This risk of diabetes is about two-fold higher among patients with the most severe psoriasis, the new study showed.

The research adds to a growing body of evidence linking psoriasis with systemic health conditions including heart attack and stroke, and the likely common denominator is the underlying inflammatory processes.

Researchers led by Ole Ahlehoff, MD, PhD, a post-doctoral fellow in cardiology at Copenhagen University Hospital Gentofte in Denmark. analyzed about 4.5 million Danish national health records. More than 52,000 people had psoriasis including 6,784 with severe psoriasis after 13 years of follow-up. Patients with psoriasis were 56 percent more likely to develop diabetes than people without the skin disorder. The risk was 49 percent greater for individuals with mild psoriasis and two times higher for people with severe psoriasis, the study showed. The findings held even after the researchers controlled for other diabetes risks.

[Source:European Society of Cardiology meeting]