Psoriasis at the time of COVID-19: results of an Italian survey on patients and caregivers
Keywords:Caregiver, COVID-19, Engagement, Psoriasis, Social Media
Methods: A multiple-choice survey, addressing the first and the second waves of COVID-19 pandemic, was administered to psoriatic patients and their caregivers, to evaluate demographics, clinical data, patient’s perception and psychological impact with respect to the assistance received. Patient’s engagement was evaluated through Social Media interactions (reach and engagement of Facebook and Instagram about the website “La pelle conta”, lapellaconta.it).
Results: Preliminary results of the survey spanned in the time period from 30/9/2020 to 11/3/2021. Out of 852 patients, 83% were women. Seventy-three percent of patients declared that living with the disease worsened during the pandemic, with the onset or exacerbation of anxiety, stress, sense of helplessness, sadness and distress. A worsening in the assistance from the healthcare system was reported by 54% of the psoriatic patients. Two hundred fifteen caregivers took part to the survey and 84% were women. During the pandemic, a worsening in the symptoms of the patients was noted by 69% of the caregivers, and they also experienced sense of helplessness, anxiety, stress, sadness and distress themselves.
Conclusions: Although both the patients and the caregivers registered a worsening of symptoms and of quality of assistance and an increase of anxiety during the pandemic, in most of the cases the patients and their families were able to face difficulties, improving their relationship. The caregivers are central for patient assistance but they cannot be left alone.
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