Kim Kardashian Keeping Up with Psoriasis
Move over, Ben Franklin. Another famous American, Keeping Up with the Kardashians star Kim Kardashian, has psoriasis. The E! cable network reality show TV personality appeared in July with red spots on her calves and elbow, setting the entertainment gossip blogs atwitter. The mystery has now been resolved, as the July 24 episode of Keeping Up with the Kardashians unveiled her diagnosis in true reality TV style.
The episode offended many people with psoriasis, especially those with more severe cases. Our Facebook page lit up that evening with comments, as did our email. We are looking on the bright side and hoping she uses her considerable fame and influence in the years ahead to help fight for increased research funding for psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. The TV beauty told Life & Style magazine that her mom also lives with psoriasis, which has a genetic component and often runs in families. Maybe she will commit herself to working towards a cure before she has children herself. We can hope, anyway.
Kardashian joins other famous people who have gone public with their psoriasis (or psoriatic arthritis), including model CariDee English, singer LeAnn Rimes, and golf great Phil Mickelson. But despite cheery quotes from dermatologists that Kardashian will be fine, the truth is more complex and less certain, as we can see just from looking at the famous people with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis. While Rimes’ skin has looked flawless in her self-posted bikini pics, CariDee had a terrible flare she courageously chronicled, and Mickelson’s golf game has been (let’s face it) shaky since his psoriatic arthritis diagnosis. Psoriasis can be a challenge for many patients, even with cutting edge treatments. It would be nice if the media (and dermatologist commentators) would admit that once in a while.
As for Keeping Up with the Kardashians star Kim Kardashian, we hope her psoriasis remains as mild as it appears in these pictures. Her psoriasis makes her no less beautiful, but might be a useful reminder to her and her many fans that our narrow definitions of beauty are fleeting.
For the rest of us, who don’t have an army of digital air brush artists ready to wipe away every blemish–or a reality TV show to profit from our psoriasis–the battle for a cure continues.