Psoriasis patients gather to talk about disease.

Patient forum planned for Oct. 24 at Coast Victoria Harbourside Hotel

A group of psoriasis patients will gather in Victoria on Thursday (Oct. 24), in advance of World Psoriasis Day (Oct. 29) to engage in dialogue, share experiences and dispel myths about psoriasis.

Psoriasis is a chronic autoimmune inflammatory skin disease that affects one million Canadians.

For those living with moderate to severe psoriasis, the skin condition extends beyond a recurring nuisance and can have a detrimental impact on a person’s psychological well being and lifestyle.

Many people incorrectly assume that psoriasis is contagious which stigmatizes patients, causing them to isolate themselves and hide their condition from others.

“The patient forum provides those living with psoriasis with information about the disease and recent research about treatment, while offering an invaluable support network for those who need it,” said Andrew Gosse, psoriasis patient advocate and founder of the Canadian Psoriasis Network.

While there is no known cure for psoriasis, there are treatment options which can interrupt the psoriasis cycle and significantly relieve its symptoms and appearance.

“The right treatment can significantly impact the quality of life for psoriasis patients,” said dermatologist Dr. John Amiss.

He encourages psoriasis patients to take control of their health, be informed and find a treatment regimen that works for them.

The Victoria Patient Forum, taking place from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at the Coast Victoria Harbourside Hotel (146 Kingston St.), is open to the public and offers psoriasis patients a chance to connect with each other and healthcare professionals.