Discover Your Treatment Options

Maybe you have already tried a few psoriasis treatments that didn’t work for you, or your psoriasis has changed over time. Either way, if you’re experiencing psoriasis symptoms and you’re not satisfied with your treatment, there are other treatment options that may be better suited to your unique situation and your goals.

Did you know?
Topical treatments are commonly used in mild to moderate psoriasis, while oral or biologic systemic therapies are for moderate to severe psoriasis.

Topical treatments

Topical treatments:

  • Are often the first type of treatment given to people with psoriasis
  • Are usually creams or ointments that are applied directly to the affected area of the skin
  • Include both over-the-counter (non-prescription) and prescription medicines

Download printable version of topical treatment tables This will open in a new window

Bath and shower solutions

Forms

  • Oils
  • Oatmeal
  • Epsom salt
  • Dead Sea salt

How to use

  • Skin is soaked for around 15 minutes
  • Should be followed by a moisturizer or oil

What they do

  • Help remove scales
  • Soothe itching

Potential side effects*

  • Most common side effects include: allergic reactions or irritation
  • Speak to your healthcare provider or read the product information
Moisturizers

How to use

  • Applied to the skin daily

What they do

  • Reduce redness and itching
  • Help keep the skin lubricated (or smooth and moist)

Potential side effects*

  • Most common side effects include: allergic reactions or irritation
  • Speak to your healthcare provider or read the product information
Salicylic acid (keratolytic)

Forms

  • Creams
  • Gels
  • Lotions
  • Ointments
  • Shampoos
  • Soaps

How to use

  • Use according to label or as directed by doctor

What they do

  • Helps remove scales
  • Helps eliminate itchy scalp

Potential side effects*

  • Speak to your healthcare provider or read the product information
Coal tar

Forms

  • Shampoos
  • Ointments
  • Gels
  • Creams
  • Oils

How to use

  • Use according to label or instructions from doctor
  • Do not use:
    • Around genital area except on the advice of a doctor
    • With other forms of psoriasis therapy unless directed by a doctor
    • For prolonged periods unless directed by a doctor
  • Use caution in exposing skin to sunburn for up to 24 hours after application
  • Consult a doctor if condition worsens or does not improve after regular use of this product as directed

What it does

  • Reduces redness and scaling
  • Helps stop itching and flaking

Potential side effects*

  • Speak to your healthcare provider or read the product information
Anthralin (Dithranol)

Forms

No longer commercially available, but can be compounded by pharmacists

How to use

  • Should be rubbed in well, and excess should be wiped off
  • Short contact treatment: left on the affected area for up to 30 minutes, or as prescribed
  • In some cases, it can be allowed to remain overnight, and is washed away in the morning
  • Consult your healthcare provider for proper use
  • Do not use:
    • On face or sex organs
    • In folds and creases of skin
    • Near eyes and mucous membranes, such as the mouth and the inside of the nose

What it does

  • Helps treat inflammation and itching
  • Limits growth of skin cells

Potential side effects*

  • Most common side effects include: irritation (soreness and redness); staining of unaffected skin, hair and clothing
Topical retinoids

Example

  • Tazarotene (TAZORAC®)

How to use

  • Applied thinly to affected areas – if less than 20% of body surface area - once daily
  • Skin should be dry before application
  • Avoid exposure to sunlight; use sunscreen and protective clothing
  • Do not use:
    • If you are pregnant – may cause harm to the unborn baby
    • Around eyes, mucous membranes, lips, or nose

What it does

  • The exact mechanism of action is unknown, but it appears to:
    • Help skin cells grow normally
    • Reduce inflammation

Potential side effects*

  • Most common side effects include: burning, redness, itchy, irritation, pain, worsening of psoriasis
  • Common side effects include: peeling of the skin, dry skin, swelling, rash, stinging
  • May make skin more sensitive to sunlight
Topical steroids

Forms

  • Prednicarbate (DERMATOP®)
  • Desoximetasone (TOPICORT®)
  • Clobetasol propionate (DERMOVATE®)

Please note that additional topical steroids are available

How to use

  • Applied directly to affected areas of skin and gently rubbed in
  • Usually applied 2 to 3 times per day
  • If no response after 1 week, use should be discontinued
  • Use should be discontinued when lesions heal
  • Do not use:
    • Over the long term
    • Around eyes
    • If you are pregnant or breastfeeding

What they do

  • Can reduce swelling, redness and itching
  • Reduce inflammation

Potential side effects*

  • Most common side effects include: dryness, acne, rash around the mouth (perioral dermatitis), allergic contact dermatitis, and an itchy rash called miliaria
  • Other side effects: local burning, irritation, itching, change in pigmentation (skin colour), infection, abnormal hair growth, skin damage (thinning, easy bruising, redness, “spider veins”), stinging, cracking, hair bumps (folliculitis), and numbness in the fingers
Vitamin D analogues

Examples

  • Calcipotriol (DOVONEX®)
  • Calcitriol (SILKIS™)

How to use

  • Applied to affected area twice daily
  • Once psoriasis improves, DOVONEX® can be reduced to once daily
  • May be used with other topicals
  • Do not use DOVONEX®:
    • On the face or around eyes
  • Do not use SILKIS™:
    • On more than 35% of your body area
    • If you have high blood calcium levels
    • If you are being treated for conditions affecting normal calcium levels (abnormal calcium metabolism)
    • Have severely reduced kidney function or end-stage kidney disease
    • On the face or around eyes

What they do

  • Slow down skin cell growth

Potential side effects*

  • Most common side effects for DOVONEX® include: local irritation, which is usually mild and temporary
  • Other side effects for DOVONEX®:
    • Rare cases of allergic reaction have been reported
    • Can lead to high blood calcium levels, but this is usually related to using more than the weekly maximum
    • Serious side effects which occurred very rarely include fatigue, depression, mental confusion, anorexia, nausea, vomiting, constipation, increased urination and in some patients, cardiac arrhythmias
  • Most common side effects for SILKIS™ include: skin discomfort, itching, psoriasis, flu syndrome and skin infection
  • Other side effects with SILKIS™:
    • May affect the results of certain laboratory tests or the level of calcium in your urine
    • Very rarely, hypercalcemia (high blood calcium levels) may occur, with symptoms of nausea, vomiting, excessive thirst, excessive urination
Combination therapy

Example

  • Calcipotriol/Betamethasone (DOVOBET®)

How to use

  • Ointment or gel applied once daily and gently rubbed in
  • Used for up to 4 or 8 weeks, depending on the preparation and area affected (body or scalp)
  • Do not use:
    • If you have problems with high calcium levels in your body
    • If you have skin infections caused by viruses (e.g., cold sores, chicken pox), a fungus (e.g., athlete’s foot, ringworm), bacteria, parasites (e.g., scabies), tuberculosis or syphilis
    • On skin areas with perioral dermatitis (red mouth rash), ichthyosis (dry, scaly skin), acne (pimples), rosacea (flushed facial skin)
    • On skin areas that have ulcers, open sores, thin skin, easily damaged veins, stretch marks
    • To treat other types of psoriasis
    • If you have severe liver disease
    • If you have severe kidney disease
    • In the eyes or on itchy skin of the genital or anal area

What it does

  • Topical steroid reduces inflammation and relieves itch
  • Vitamin D analogue slows down excessive production of skin cells

Potential side effects*

  • Most common side effect: itching
  • Other side effects include:
    • Local irritation, dryness, burning, stinging, thinning of the skin, spider veins, stretch marks, various types of skin rashes and red, swollen hair follicles
    • If applied to the face, an acne-like rash and swelling can occur
    • Worsening of psoriasis can occur
    • In rare cases, adrenal glands may stop working properly
    • Rare and serious side effects include pustular psoriasis, adrenal effects and skin thinning
    • Very rare serious side effects include allergic reaction and high blood calcium levels

*Always speak to your doctor and read the product information before trying a new treatment. Please consult the Patient Information for each product for warnings, precautions and prescribing considerations. The lists above do not include an exhaustive list of side effects. Your healthcare professional can provide the complete list. Also, speak to your healthcare provider if you experience any serious side effects or if side effects persist.

Ultraviolet light therapy

Ultraviolet (UV) light therapy:

  • Involves exposing the skin to UV light
  • Can be a “targeted” treatment if used only on skin affected by psoriasis
  • Is conducted in a clinic or hospital – it should not be substituted with the use of tanning beds
  • Must be done consistently to be effective; however, the lifetime exposure to UV light should be limited

Download printable version of ultraviolet light treatment tables This will open in a new window

Psoralen and PUVA (Psoralen and UVA)

How to use

  • Psoralen is taken by mouth or is applied to the skin. The affected area is then exposed to UVA, typically by standing in a lighting unit
  • Recommended in adults with moderate to severe psoriasis
  • May be used alone or in combination with other therapies
  • When used twice weekly, clearance may be seen within 4 to 15 weeks
  • Treatment to be discontinued upon clearance
  • Lifetime exposure should not exceed 200 sessions
  • Should only be used in pregnancy if benefits outweigh the risks

What it does

  • Psoralen is a light-sensitizing agent
  • In the presence of UVA, psoralen slows down the growth of skin cells

Potential side effects*

  • Most common short-term side effects of oral PUVA include: nausea, itching, redness of skin, higher risk of skin cancer, increased risk of cataracts if eyes are not protected for 12 to 24 hours after treatment, increased risk of freckling and skin aging if more than 150 PUVA treatments are received within 5 years
Artificial UVB light source

How to use

  • Treatment involves exposing the affected area to UVB for a set amount of time in a bed or booth
  • When used three times per week, clearance may be seen within 4 to 15 weeks
  • Treatment to be discontinued upon clearance
  • May be used alone or with topical treatments or systemic therapies
  • May be used when psoriasis affects a larger area of the skin

What it does

  • UVB slows the growth of skin cells

Potential side effects*

  • Most common side effects include: burns, blisters, premature aging of the skin

*Always speak to your doctor and read the product information before trying a new treatment. Please consult the Patient Information for each product for warnings, precautions and prescribing considerations. The lists above do not include an exhaustive list of side effects. Your healthcare professional can provide the complete list. Also, speak to your healthcare provider if you experience any serious side effects or if side effects persist.

Oral medications

Oral medications (taken by mouth):

  • Are known as “systemic” medications because they deliver medicine throughout the body rather than to one small area
  • Include cytotoxic drugs, immunosuppressants, and oral retinoids
  • Are available by prescription only

Download printable version of the oral medications tables This will open in a new window

Methotrexate

How to use

  • Taken by mouth or injection
  • Usually taken weekly
  • Indicated for severe disabling psoriasis where standard therapeutic intervention fails
  • Do not take if you:
    • Have severe kidney problems
    • Are pregnant
    • Are breastfeeding
    • Have psoriasis and alcoholism, chronic liver disease, immunodeficiency (your resistance to infectious diseases is reduced) or blood disorders

What it does

  • Slows the rate of skin cell growth

Potential side effects*

  • Most common side effects include: upset stomach, stomach pain, vomiting, nausea, loss of appetite, dizziness, chills and fever, diarrhea, sores on lips or mouth, a fall in the number of white blood cells (which may reduce your resistance to infection and increase your chances of cold sores, blood poisoning or swelling of blood vessels) and tiredness
  • Other side effects: Because of the way medicines like methotrexate act on the body, there is a chance that they might cause other unwanted effects that may not occur until months or years after the medicine is used. These delayed effects may include certain types of cancer, such as leukemia
  • Less common side effects are: headaches, hair loss, mood changes, confusion, ringing in the ears, sore eyes, skin rashes, increased sensitivity to sunlight, unexplained weight loss, a fall in the number of other blood cells (which may increase your chances of bruising, bleeding or tiredness), damage to the lungs, harm to an unborn baby, and convulsions
  • Most common serious side effects include: diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal pain, mouth ulcers, sore throat, fever, chills, and swollen glands. Less common serious side effects include chest pain, cough, shortness of breath, fever, unusual bleeding or bruising, and severe headaches
  • Rare but serious side effects include: signs of severe allergic reaction, pain or difficulty urinating, lower back or side pain, blood in urine or stools, dark urine, and yellow colour of eyes or skin
Cyclosporine (NEORAL®)

How to use

  • Taken by mouth, typically in 2 equal doses per day (i.e., the same amount each time)
  • Indicated for severe psoriasis that does not respond to other therapies or when patients cannot tolerate other therapies
  • Do not take if you have:
    • Abnormal kidney function
    • Uncontrolled blood pressure
    • Any type of cancer
    • Uncontrolled infection
    • Inherited or acquired immunodeficiency

What it does

  • Suppresses the immune system and slows the growth of skin cells

Potential side effects*

  • Most common side effects include: high blood pressure, kidney or liver problems, headache (including migraine), increased levels of lipids (e.g., cholesterol) in the blood, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, constipation, diarrhea, acne or oily skin, slight trembling of the hands, increased growth of fine hairs on the body, muscle or joint pains or cramping, weakness, anxiety, tingling in the fingers, toes or mouth, night sweats, hearing loss, swelling of the face, increased potassium in the body (your doctor may instruct you to avoid high dietary potassium intake), tender or swollen gums, decreased ability to fight infection, low level of white blood cells, high level of sugar in the blood, hot flashes, stomach ulcer, and rash
  • Other side effects: Cyclosporine reduces the function of your immune system. This means you are more likely to get bacterial, viral or fungal infections. Although very rare, the decreased function of your immune system may also increase your chances of developing cancer. Cyclosporine may increase your risk of an infection of the brain called multifocal leukoencephalopathy
  • Side effects that occurred with unknown frequency were: low levels of magnesium in the blood, vomiting and sensitivity to light, inflammation of the pancreas with severe upper stomach pain, muscle spasm, pain in legs and feet, breast enlargement in men, tiredness and weight gain, and a high level of uric acid in the blood
  • Common serious side effects include: tremor, high blood pressure, tingling, bacterial, fungal or viral infection, vomiting or diarrhea, muscle or joint pains or cramping, weakness, anxiety, swelling at the back of the eyes which may be associated with blurred vision and possible visual impairment due to an increase in pressure inside the head (benign intracranial hypertension), high level of potassium in the blood, low level of red blood cells or platelets (which may be associated with pale skin, tiredness, breathlessness, dark urine [sign of breakdown of red blood cells]), bruising or bleeding with no obvious reasons, confusion, disorientation, decreased alertness, and kidney problems
  • Uncommon serious side effects include: ulcers, convulsions, brain disorder (with signs such as seizures, confusion, disorientation, decreased responsiveness, personality changes, agitation, sleeplessness, sight disturbances, blindness, coma, paralysis of part or all of the body, stiff neck, loss of coordination with or without abnormal speech and eye movements), and allergic reactions. Abnormal menstrual cycle was a rare serious side effect and tumours/malignancy was a very rare serious side effect
Apremilast (OTEZLA®)

How to use

  • Taken by mouth twice a day
  • Dose should be increased gradually to reduce the risk of gastrointestinal symptoms
  • Do not take if you:
    • Are breastfeeding
    • Are pregnant or intend to become pregnant

What it does

  • Reduces the activity of a molecule called PDE4, resulting in less inflammation in the skin and joints

Potential side effects*

  • Side effects include: diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, headache, upper respiratory tract infection (e.g., common cold), flu (body aches and pains, tiredness, fever), decreased appetite, abdominal discomfort, indigestion, fatigue, trouble sleeping, back pain and dizziness
  • Common serious side effects include: migraine, depression and weight loss
  • Uncommon serious side effects include: fast heartbeat and/or heart palpitations, allergic reaction (rash; hives; swelling of the face, lips, tongue or throat; difficulty swallowing or breathing), infection of the lungs (shortness of breath, difficult and painful breathing, cough, wheezing, and fever)
Acitretin (SORIATANE®)

How to use

  • Taken by mouth once a day
  • Indicated for severe psoriasis (includes erythrodermic and pustular types) that does not respond to other standard therapies or when patients cannot tolerate other standard therapies
  • Women must use effective birth control while taking it
  • Do not take if you:
    • Are pregnant or plan to get pregnant
    • Are breastfeeding
    • Have severe liver or kidney disease
    • Have consistent high blood lipid levels
    • Take tetracyclines
    • Take methotrexate
    • Have high vitamin A levels

What it does

  • The exact mechanism of action is unknown, but its most important effect is a more normal pattern of growth for skin cells
  • It is a synthetic form of vitamin A

Potential side effects*

  • Most common side effects include: dry eyes, particularly if you wear contact lenses; dry mouth, chapped lips, runny or dry nose; dry skin, peeling of fingertips and/or palms and soles, itchiness, rash, sticky skin, brittle nails; chills, joint pain, increased sensitivity to touch; most people experience some degree of hair loss or abnormal hair texture but the condition varies. The extent of hair loss and whether or not all hair will return to normal after treatment cannot be predicted
  • Common side effects include: nosebleeds; ear problems such as pain, wax build-up, or buzzing in the ear; eye problems such as blurred vision, light sensitivity, pain, impaired vision; inflammation along the edge of the eyelid (blepharitis), inflammation or infection of the membrane lining the eyelids (conjunctivitis); tiredness, pain, thirst; swelling of leg, foot, ankle (edema); bleeding or inflammation of the gums, or inflammation of the mucous lining of the mouth; nausea or abdominal pain; infections, including skin around the finger nail; decreased or increased appetite; back pain, bone pain or muscle pain; headache, trouble sleeping; skin problems such as cold sweat, excessive sweating, sensitivity to sunlight; inflamed, ulcerated, and oily or cracked skin
  • Uncommon side effects include: decreased night vision, other eye problems, and impaired hearing
  • Common serious side effects include: abdominal pain, diarrhea, headache, nausea, vomiting, fragile skin, hair loss, inflamed lips, itching, peeling of fingertips and skin, redness or rash, and sticky skin
  • Uncommon serious side effects include: blurred vision, dizziness, persistent feeling of dry eyes, yellowing of the skin or eyes and/or flu-like symptoms and/or dark urine, shortness of breath, weakness, nausea, dizziness, chest pain, trouble speaking, swelling of a leg, ankle, foot or arm
  • Rare/very rare serious side effects include: decreased night vision, impaired hearing, aches or pain in joints or difficulty moving, rectal bleeding, changes in mood/depression, thoughts of suicide, and aggressive behaviour
  • Bone changes have been detected in patients taking SORIATANE®

*Always speak to your doctor and read the product information before trying a new treatment. Please consult the Patient Information for each product for warnings, precautions and prescribing considerations. The lists above do not include an exhaustive list of side effects. Your healthcare professional can provide the complete list. Also, speak to your healthcare provider if you experience any serious side effects or if side effects persist.

Biologic therapies

Biologic therapies (or “biologics”) are:

  • “Systemic” medications that target specific systems within the body, such as the immune system
  • Most often used by people who have moderate to severe psoriasis
  • Administered by injection under the skin or by intravenous (IV) infusion
  • Available by prescription only

Download printable version of the biologic therapies tables This will open in a new window

Ustekinumab (STELARA®)

How to use

  • Each dose is given as a single subcutaneous (under the skin) injection
  • Second dose: 4 weeks after first dose
  • Subsequent doses: once every 12 weeks
  • May be self-injected after proper training, or administered by a healthcare provider
  • Before beginning treatment, your doctor will examine or test you for tuberculosis (TB)
  • Do not take if you:
    • Have a serious infection (such as TB, infections caused by bacteria or fungi, bacterial infections that have spread throughout the body) or hypersensitivity contraindication

What it does

  • Blocks the action of two proteins – called interleukin 12 (IL-12) and IL-23 – that may cause the immune system to attack parts of the body, like the skin and nails

Potential side effects*

  • Most common side effects include: upper respiratory tract infection (e.g., the common cold), and headache
  • Very common or common side effects include: infected nose, sinuses or throat (e.g., a cold); sore throat, nasal congestion and allergic reaction (skin rash)
  • Other side effects: May lower your ability to fight infections. Some infections could become serious and lead to hospitalization. If your doctor feels that you are at risk for TB, you may be treated with medicine for TB before you begin treatment and during treatment. May decrease the activity of the immune system. May increase the risk of certain types of cancer
  • Uncommon or rare side effects include: cellulitis (skin infection), vaginal yeast infections, tooth abscess or tooth infection; serious allergic reactions (e.g., swollen face or trouble breathing), increase in redness and shedding of the skin
Secukinumab (COSENTYX®)

How to use

  • Each dose is given as two subcutaneous (under the skin) injections
  • Initial doses: Once a week for 4 weeks
  • Maintenance doses: Once a month
  • May be self-injected after proper training, or administered by a healthcare provider
  • Do not take if you:
    • Have any signs of infection or an active tuberculosis infection or hypersensitivity contraindication

What it does

  • Neutralizes the activity of a protein called IL-17A, which is present at increased levels in psoriasis; helps reduce the signs and symptoms of psoriasis such as pain, itching and scaly patches

Potential side effects*

  • Very common side effects include: upper respiratory tract infections with symptoms such as sore throat and stuffy nose (nasopharyngitis, rhinitis)
  • Common side effects include: cold sores (oral herpes), diarrhea, itchy rash (urticaria) and runny nose (rhinorrhea)
  • Uncommon side effects include: oral thrush (oral candidiasis), signs of low levels of white blood cells such as fever, sore throat or mouth ulcers due to infections (neutropenia), athlete’s foot (tinea pedis); and discharge from the eye with itching, redness and swelling (conjunctivitis)
  • Rare but serious side effects include: difficulty breathing or swallowing; swelling of the face, lips, tongue or throat; severe itching of the skin, with a red rash or raised bumps
Ixekizumab (TALTZ™)

How to use

  • Given as a subcutaneous (under the skin) injection
  • Initial doses: Two injections at week 0, followed by one injection at weeks 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, and 12
  • Subsequent doses: One injection once a month
  • May be self-injected after proper training or administered by a healthcare provider
  • Do not take if you:
    • Are allergic to ixekizumab or any of the other ingredients in TALTZ™

What it does

  • Neutralizes the activity of a protein called IL-17A, which is present at increased levels in plaque psoriasis; helps reduce the signs and symptoms of the disease, such as itching, pain and scaling

Potential side effects*

  • Very common side effects include: upper respiratory tract infections with symptoms such as sore throat and stuffy nose (nasopharyngitis) and injection site reactions (rash, pain, itch or swelling)
  • Rare but serious side effects include: serious allergic reactions such as feeling faint; swelling of your face, eyelids, lips, mouth, tongue, or throat; trouble breathing or throat tightness; chest tightness; or skin rash
  • Common side effects include: nausea, athlete’s foot (tinea pedis) and sore throat
  • Uncommon side effects include: oral thrush (oral candidiasis); fever, flu-like symptoms; runny nose; hives; signs of low levels of white blood cells such as fever, sore throat or mouth ulcers due to infections (neutropenia); and discharge from the eye with itching, redness and swelling (conjunctivitis)
Infliximab (REMICADE®)

How to use

  • Given by intravenous infusion over 2 hours at a dedicated infusion centre staffed by trained nurses and other qualified healthcare professionals
  • Initial doses: three in 6 weeks (at week 0, at week 2, and at week 6)
  • Subsequent doses: once every 8 weeks
  • Do not take if you:
    • Have a severe infection, such as sepsis (an infection of the bloodstream), abscess, tuberculosis, or other serious infection
    • Have moderate or severe heart failure
    • Are allergic to infliximab or any ingredient within, or have a history of allergies to mouse proteins

What it does

  • Blocks tumour necrosis factor (TNF) alpha, which is made by the body’s immune system and interferes with the body’s response to inflammation

Potential side effects*

  • Most common side effects include: abdominal pain, back pain, coughing, diarrhea, dizziness, fatigue, itchiness, pain, upper respiratory infections (such as bronchitis, sinusitis, cold, sore throat), upset stomach, and urinary tract infections
  • Other side effects: REMICADE® may have a minor influence on the ability to drive and use machines. Dizziness may occur following administration of REMICADE®
  • Common serious side effects include: serious infections (symptoms of fever, feeling very tired, having a cough or flu-like symptoms) and allergic reactions (hives, difficulty breathing, chest pain and high or low blood pressure or symptoms 3 to 12 days after treatment)
  • Uncommon serious side effects include: liver injury (jaundice, dark brown-coloured urine, pain on right side of abdomen, fever, severe fatigue), heart failure (new or worsening shortness of breath, or swelling of ankles or feet), blood problems (symptoms of fever that do not go away, bruising or bleeding very easily, or looking very pale), nervous system disorders (changes in vision, weakness in arms and/or legs and numbness or tingling in any part of the body), malignancy and lupus (chest discomfort or pain that does not go away, shortness of breath, joint pain, or a rash on the cheeks or arms that gets worse in the sun)
Adalimumab (HUMIRA®)

How to use

  • Given as a subcutaneous (under the skin) injection
  • Every other week
  • May be self-injected with proper training, or administered by a healthcare professional
  • Do not take if you:
    • Have a serious infection, such as tuberculosis, infections caused by bacteria or fungi and sepsis (an infection of the bloodstream)
    • Have moderate or severe heart failure
    • Are allergic to any of the ingredients

What it does

  • Blocks tumour necrosis factor (TNF) alpha, which is made by the body’s immune system and interferes with the body’s response to inflammation

Potential side effects*

  • Most common serious side effects include: injection site reactions
  • Other serious side effects include: cough and cold symptoms, including sore throat; headache; rash; nausea; pneumonia; fever; and abdominal pain
  • Uncommon serious side effects include: tuberculosis, other serious infections, nerve disorder, appendicitis, blood clots (abdominal pain, chest pain, leg or arm pain with redness and swelling), bladder infection (painful urination), hepatitis (jaundice [yellow skin, dark urine]), abdominal pain and tiredness
Etanercept (ENBREL®)

How to use

  • Given as a subcutaneous (under the skin) injection
  • Initial doses: one injection twice weekly for 3 months
  • Maintenance doses: one injection weekly or twice-weekly (4 to 8 injections per month)
  • May be self-injected with proper training, or administered by a healthcare professional
  • Do not take if you:
    • Are allergic to etanercept or any ingredient within the formulation
    • Have, or are at risk of, sepsis

What it does

  • Blocks tumour necrosis factor (TNF) alpha, which is made by the body’s immune system and interferes with the body’s response to inflammation

Potential side effects*

  • Most common serious side effects include: injection site reactions
  • Common serious side effects include: upper respiratory tract infections and headaches
  • Uncommon serious side effects include: serious infections, tuberculosis and nerve disorders

*Always speak to your doctor and read the product information before trying a new treatment. Please consult the Patient Information for each product for warnings, precautions and prescribing considerations. The lists above do not include an exhaustive list of side effects. Your healthcare professional can provide the complete list. Also, speak to your healthcare provider if you experience any serious side effects or if side effects persist.

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If you’re living with psoriasis and you’re not meeting your treatment goals, be sure to talk to your doctor or dermatologist.
Together, you can find a treatment that is better suited for you and your psoriasis.