Psoriatic arthritis affects many Americans daily. It can compromise one’s quality of life without proper treatment. While there are many existing treatment options for psoriatic arthritis currently, they don’t work for everyone. Otezla is a new treatment option with the potential to help patients who are resistant to other treatments. 

Who is Amgen?

Amgen is a leading biotechnology company that develops medications to treat illnesses that have little to no treatment options. They offer many clinical trials to help develop and test their drugs in a safe, controlled environment.  Amgen has a presence in nearly 100 countries and regions worldwide. Their mission is to help the many people suffering from serious illnesses with medical innovation and the scientific method. One of their specialties is diseases stemming from inflammation, such as psoriatic arthritis.

What is Otezla?

As expected, psoriasis is a huge part of psoriatic arthritis. While not always the case, 3 out of 5 people with psoriasis will develop the form of arthritis. Otezla is a pill, not a cream or injection. It was designed to help with the skin condition. Clearer skin, with reduced scaliness and redness, is achievable on the medication. It minimizes inflammation in the body, working as a PDE4 inhibitor. PDE4 is an enzyme found within inflammatory cells and is thought to be connected with inflammation. So, you can see how reducing this can help reduce inflammation as well. Less inflammation means less scaly plaques in patients with psoriasis and less swelling and joint pain in patients with psoriatic arthritis. Learn more about the treatment here.

Symptoms of Psoriatic Arthritis

People living with psoriatic arthritis share similar symptoms. Inflammation causes swelling and stiffness in the joints, leading to pain. This typically occurs in the hands and feet, but can also affect larger joints such as the knees and shoulders. Swelling in the fingers and toes is common, and eye inflammation can occur as well. Some GI issues, such as abdominal pain and diarrhea can occur in some patients too. 

Otezla Side Effects

Those allergic to Apremilast, the active ingredient in Otezla, should not take Otezla. Otelza can cause various side effects differing from patient to patient. Otezla can cause:

  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting (most common during the first weeks of treatment)
  • Depression
  • Other Mood Changes
  • Weight Loss

Certain medication should not be taken in conjunction with Otezla. They can decrease effectiveness and increase risk of side effects. If you are currently on other medications, consult with your doctor to see if you’re able to take Otezla. 

Advanced Rheumatology of Houston
Dr. Tamar Brionez has over 10 years of experience diagnosing and treating patients with rheumatic illnesses. She and her team at Advanced Rheumatology of Houston believe in innovation and genuine care. Advanced Rheumatology has partnered with Amgen to conduct a psoriatic arthritis clinical trial. Otezla has already been approved as a treatment for PsA, but this is to determine its effectiveness and benefits in patients with 5 or less years of psoriatic arthritis. If you meet this criterion and are curious about eligibility, contact our offices here