The Canadian Association of Psoriasis Patients is pleased to announce the winners of the 2021 studentships in psoriatic disease. Congratulations to all of you!
Arvin Ighani, University of Toronto
Supervisor: Dr. Jensen Yeung
Project Title: Does phototherapy for the treatment of psoriasis warrant further government funding in Canada? An evaluation of the efficacy, safety, and impact on quality of life of narrowband ultraviolet-B phototherapy to support evidence-based health care policies
Psoriasis is a skin condition which is thought to affect approximately 125 million people worldwide. Many of these individuals have moderate-to-severe psoriasis that requires treatment beyond first-line topical management. Although many effective oral and injectable therapies exist for its management, they can be associated with severe side-effects, large financial burden, inconvenient monitoring, and uncomfortable routes of delivery. Given these setbacks, physicians would ideally first consider NB-UVB phototherapy as a treatment option in suitable candidates before recommending systemic or biologic therapies because of its excellent safety profile and potentially successful clinical reduction of psoriasis. However, the lack of accessibility to phototherapy centers and long wait times for treatment often impede patients from seeking this therapy. The issues surrounding accessibility for phototherapy are partly driven by the lack of physician compensation for prescribing these treatments and the unmet need for increased government funding to maintain phototherapy centers. Currently, there are few high-quality research studies that clearly demonstrate the efficacy and impact on quality of life of NB-UVB phototherapy for psoriasis patients in the context of specific dosing regimens with qualified nursing staff that use optimal dosing regimens to achieve successful psoriasis clearance. The goal of our research is to conduct a high-quality prospective study that clearly demonstrates the efficacy, safety, and impact on quality of life of NB-UVB phototherapy. This data can then be used to guide government policymaking and potentially be used to justify increased funding for phototherapy centers across the country, leading to greater patient accessibility, optimal dosing regimens for patients, and ultimately better clearance of psoriasis with minimal side effects for patients who have been unsuccessful with other treatments.