Background: Amyloidosis is a heterogeneous group of disorders characterized by extracellular deposition of fibrillar protein. Secondary amyloidosis occurs in patients with chronic infectious or inflammatory processes. Only 18 cases of secondary amyloidosis complicating psoriasis have been reported.
Objective: We characterized secondary amyloidosis complicating psoriasis.
Methods: We reviewed all cases of coexisting psoriasis and amyloidosis seen at the Mayo Clinic from 1950 to 1992. The clinical characteristics were summarized, and the literature was reviewed.
Results: There were 28 cases of coexistent disease, and in five of these psoriasis was the only inflammatory condition preceding the development of secondary amyloidosis. Histopathologic confirmation with Congo red staining was available in four cases, and immunohistochemical confirmation of the characteristic amyloid A subtype was performed in two.
Conclusion: Follow-up of four patients supports the view that amyloidosis associated with psoriasis is an aggressive disease that may be fatal.