High BMI or Skin Disease: Which Would You Choose?


Patients with hidradenitis suppurativa (HS) were more likely trade time off their life to live without skin disease, according to the findings of a recent study. The results showed that patients with either psoriasis or HS and obesity were more impacted by their skin disease than their weight.


The study included 79 participants with obesity and psoriasis or HS who completed a survey. Differences in impact on quality of life between skin diseases and obesity were assessed using a time-trade-off utility, and analysis adjusted for degree of obesity and disease severity.


Participants with HS had a higher body mass index (BMI) compared with those with psoriasis (mean BMI 38.1 kg/m2 vs 34.9 kg/m2, respectively).


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The researchers found that participants with HS or psoriasis were willing to trade a significantly higher proportion of their life to live without skin disease than to live at a normal weight. This persisted after they controlled for weight and disease severity.

In addition, those with HS were willing to trade significantly more years of life to live at a normal weight compared with those with psoriasis.

“In this study population, obesity was more severe in patients with HS than in those with psoriasis,” the researchers concluded. “Even after controlling for relative severity, HS was more problematic for participants in this study than weight when these conditions existed concomitantly.”

One limitation of this study, the researchers noted, was the small sample size and that it was conducted at an academic institution.


Storer MA, Danesh MJ, Sandhu ME, Pascoe V, Kimball AB. An assessment of the relative impact of hidradenitis suppurativa, psoriasis, and obesity on quality of life. Int J Womens Dermatol. 2018;4(4):198-202. doi:10.1016/j.ijwd.2018.08.009

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