Advances in the Management of Prurigo Nodularis - Episode 17

Advice for Managing Patients With PN

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Shawn Kwatra, MD, and Sarina B. Elmariah, MD, PhD, share final pearls of wisdom for other physicians taking care of patients with prurigo nodularis (PN).

Raj Chovatiya, MD, PhD: Do each of you have some parting advice or a word of wisdom for any physicians out there taking care of patients with prurigo nodularis [PN]? Shawn, I'll start with you.

Shawn Kwatra, MD: I would tell the physicians, ‘You have an opportunity to make a humongous impact on someone's quality of life.’ When we looked at the overall quality of life and how it's affected in PN patients, it's as severe as having a stroke, chronic heart failure, or being on hemodialysis. I think that's underestimated, the opportunity that any type of doctor has when you encounter a PN patient, to make a difference. At that moment, you can give folks the proper diagnosis. You can do a lab workup. You can make sure that they don't have many of these different disease comorbidities. You can also start them on therapies that are going to reduce, in my view, their likelihood of developing many different comorbidities. Sleep problems, anxiety, depression, and even worsening type 2 diabetes. I think it's a great opportunity that doctors have to intervene and make a tremendous difference. I think it's one of those conditions that has such a significant effect on quality of life. It's arguably one of the highest we see among any patients in our specialty.

Raj Chovatiya, MD, PhD: How about you Sarina? Any parting thoughts?

Sarina B. Elmariah, MD, PhD: Yes. I couldn't say it better than that. I usually say at the end of these that I advise physicians to care about their patients. I will say also to think broadly and stay up-to-date on the treatments we can offer. This is a landscape that is changing; as we mentioned, there are multiple drugs. I think there are probably going to be more that are coming online as the landscape of AD, atopic dermatitis, evolves, and the landscape of other disorders evolves. We will also learn more about prurigo nodularis. It's not just the limited few that we spoke about. I encourage everybody to really stay up-to-date and keep an eye out for things on the horizon.

Raj Chovatiya, MD, PhD: I really can't put it better than both of you did. The one thing I tell my residents when it comes to any patients, but particularly these patients, is just listen. Just take a second and listen. You'll be surprised how much you figure out. How quickly you're going to change what your point of view might have been when you came into the room. Your viewpoint when you read the chief complaint or looked through the chart and saw what other notes said before the same findings you eventually get to. You'll find that perhaps you will understand why this is such an interesting and fascinating disease state and one which deserves to be treated as such. Just alongside all the other diseases that we think about potentially that are more prevalent or better understood.

With that, thank you, Shawn and Sarina, for this rich and informative discussion. This was amazing to talk to 2 world experts and get to the cutting edge of where we are and where we should be going. Thank you all for watching this HCPLive® Peer Exchange. If you enjoyed the content, please subscribe to our e-newsletters to receive upcoming peer exchanges and other great content right in your inbox. Thank you very much.

Transcript edited for clarity