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Medical Research on the Intestine/Psoriasis Connection

Intestinal Permeability

Edgar Cayce is not alone in recognizing that toxins leaking from the intestines are involved in psoriasis. The technical term for leaky intestines is “intestinal permeability.” Several researchers have written on this subject in the medical journals. Here is a brief summary of that literature.

Humbert, et al. (1991), notes, “A possible relationship between intestinal structure and function in the pathogenesis of psoriasis has recently brought about considerable interest.” They studied the intestines of 15 psoriatic patients and 15 healthy subjects and concluded, “The difference in intestinal permeability between psoriatic patients and controls could be due to alterations in the small intestinal epithelium of psoriatics.” (p. 324)

Person and Bernhard (1986) note that the pustular dermatitis associated with small bowel bypass surgery and the cutaneous manifestations of inflammatory bowel disease are well known and generally assumed to be due to the absorption of microbial antigens from the bowel.” They hypothesize that the association of intestinal and dermatological pathology “may be the result of minor perturbations of mucosal permeability or the failure of locally produced dimeric serum IgA to inactivate bacterial or dietary antigens. Such disparate entities as Reiter’s syndrome, psoriasis, pyoderma gangrenosum, and ankylosing spondylitis, as well as the pustular eruptions of Behcet’s syndrome, pustular psoriasis, and lithium therapy, mayshare this common pathogenesis.” (p. 559) This particular research approach is an excellent example of comorbidity and nonspecificity. In other words, the same cause may produce a variety of symptoms and syndromes.

Yates, Watkinson, and Kelman (1982) also note comorbidity and nonspecificity in an article titled, “Further Evidence for an Association Between Psoriasis, Crohn’s Disease, and Ulcerative Colitis.” To test the hypothesis that these three illnesses are related, they studied 204 patients with inflammatory bowel disease (116 with Crohn’s disease and 88 with ulcerative colitis) and 204 age- and sex-matched controls. Although their research did not directly address the question of intestinal permeability, they did conclude: “The prevalence of psoriasis in Crohn’s disease (11.2%) and in ulcerative colitis (5.7%) was significantly greater than in the control group (1.5%). The prevalence of psoriasis in first-degree relatives of patients with inflammatory bowel disease was also increased. It is suggested that there is a relationship between psoriasis, ankylosing spondylitis, sacroiliitis, peripheral arthropathy and inflammatory bowel disease, which may be explained by common genetic factors.” (p. 323)


References and Selected Bibliography

Barry, R. M., Salmon, P. R. & Read, A. E.  (1971). Small Bowel Mucosal Changes in Psoriasis. Gut, 12(6), p. 495.

Barry, R. E., Salmon, P. R., Read, A. E. & Warin, R. P. (1971). Mucosal Architecture of the Small Bowel in Cases of Psoriasis. Gut, 12(11), pp. 873-877.

Bedi, T. R., Bhutani, L. K., Kandhari, K. C. & Tandon, B. N. (1974). Small Bowel in Skin Diseases. Indian Journal of Medical Research, 62(1), pp. 142-149.

de Vos, R. J., de Boer, W. A. & Haas, F. D. (1995). Is There a Relationship Between Psoriasis and Coeliac Disease? Journal of Internal Medicine, 237(1), p. 118.

Fry, L. (1970). The Gut and the Skin. Postgraduate Medical Journal, 46(541), pp. 664-670.

Humbert, P., Bidet, A., Treffel, P., Drobacheff, C. & Agache, P. (1991). Intestinal Permeability in Patients with Psoriasis.  Journal of Dermatological Science, 2(4), pp. 324-326.

Madanagopalan, N., Shantha, M., Rao, U. P. & Thambiah, A. S. (1973). Peroral Jejunal Mucosal Biopsy in Dermatological and Some Non-diarrhoeal Diseases. Australian Journal of Dermatology, 14(1), pp. 47-52.

Marks, J. & Shuster, S. (1971). Intestinal Malabsorption and the Skin. Gut, 12(11), pp. 938-947.

Marks, J. & Shuster, S. (1971). Psoriatic Enteropathy. Archives of Dermatology, 103(6), pp. 676-678.

Moll, J. M., Haslock, I., Macrae, I. F. & Wright, V.¬†(1974).¬†Associations Between¬†¬†Ankylosing Spondylitis,¬†Psoriatic Arthritis, Reiter’s Disease, the Intestinal Arthropathies, and Behcet’s syndrome.¬†Medicine, 53(5), pp. 343-364.

O’Laughlin, J. C. & Di Giovanni, A. M.¬†(1979).¬†Psoriatic Enteropathy: Report of Case and Review of Literature.¬†¬†Journal of the American Osteopathic Association,¬†79(2), pp. 107-111.

Person, J. R. & Bernhard, J. D. (1986). Autointoxication Revisited. Journal of the Americal Academy of Dermatology, 15(3), pp. 559-563.

Salmon, P. R., Read, A. E. & Warin, R. (1969). Radiocarbon Estimation of Lactose Absorption: A Survey of 104 Patients with Skin Disease. Gut, 10(12), p. 1052.

Shuster, S. (1968). Dermatogenic Enteropathy. New York State Journal of Medicine, 68(24), pp. 3160-3165.

Summerly, R. & Giles, C. (1971). Question of Psoriatic Enteropathy. Archives of Dermatology, 103(6), pp. 678-679.

Yates, V. M., Watkinson, G. & Kelman, A.¬†(1982).¬†Further¬†Evidence¬†for¬†an Association Between Psoriasis, Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis.¬†British Journal of Dermatology, 106(3), pp. 323-330.

Note: As this information is not intended for self-diagnosis or self-treatment, your use of this database of information indicates that you are aware of our recommendation that you consult with a professional healthcare provider before taking any action.