Janssen Pharmaceutical K.K.Invisible Disease: Changing the Way We Think about Psoriasis



Japan is a country where the stigma of psoriasis, a skin condition that causes painful raised plaques, is among the worst in the world. The word for psoriasis, kansen, confusingly is a homophone for “contagious” in Japanese. The misconception that it is contagious can lead patients to isolate themselves and avoid social interactions.



We launched an initiative with a well-known model who revealed that she is living with psoriasis as the ambassador. The campaign included an art exhibition where beautiful artworks that when photographed with a flash revealed hidden psoriasis plaques and related the daily struggles experienced by people who have psoriasis.



Awareness of psoriasis increased 15.4 percentage points (from 24.7% to 40.1%)

The misconception that psoriasis is contagious decreased 72.5% (n=1,000)

Psoriasis patients concerned with their appearance dropped by 30 percentage points

10 times increase in biologic-related news compared to the previous year

12 million social media engagements (four times the KPI)


  • 2019 PR Awards Asia: Gold (Healthcare), Silver (Public Education)

  • 2019 Spikes Asia: Silver (Healthcare)