The effect of smartphone addiction on hand joints in psoriatic patients: an ultrasound-based study (2017)

J Eur Acad Dermatol Venereol. 2017 Jun 2. doi: 10.1111/jdv.14380.

Megna M1, Gisonni P2, Napolitano M1, Orabona GD2, Patruno C1, Ayala F1, Balato N1.



Distal interphalangeal (DIP) arthritis is a frequent form of psoriatic arthritis being often linked to nail psoriasis. Modern society is characterized by over-use of smartphones. Indeed, literature has recently focalized on research into smartphone addiction and health related problems.


Since smartphone addiction is able to determine over-use and repeated movements of DIP joints and nails, the aim of this study was to evaluate the impact of smartphone use on hand joints of young psoriatic patients.


An observational study involving 4 different groups such as non smartphone addicted (SA) psoriatic patients, SA psoriatic patients, non SA controls and SA controls was performed. Each subject underwent an ultrasound examination of both hands by 3 independent and blinded to group assignment radiologists. A specific score was used to evaluate the inflammatory state of the analyzed joints.


The total ultrasound score was statistically significant higher in SA controls respect to non SA controls (3.4 vs 1.4; P<0.05) as well as in SA psoriasis patients compared to non SA psoriatic subjects (15.2 vs 6.7; P<0.01). Higher mean of ultrasound score was found for left hand in controls (both SA or not) and for right hand in psoriatic subjects (both SA or not), however without reaching statistical significance.


Smartphone over-use was found to be linked with higher signs of inflammation of muscoloskelatal structures of hands joints in both psoriasis and controls through ultrasound examination. Therefore, smartphone over-use may be a factor which facilitate or speed up the possible development of psoriatic arthritis. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.

This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.


addiction; psoriasis; psoriatic arthritis; smartphone; ultrasound investigation

PMID: 28573823

DOI: 10.1111/jdv.14380