Lichen planus: what is it, types (oral, pigmented…) and treatment

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Lichen planus is an inflammatory disease that can affect the skin, nails, scalp and even the mucous membranes of the mouth and genital region. This illness is characterized by reddish lesions, which can have small white fringes with a wrinkled appearance, have a characteristic shine and are accompanied by intense comezón and hinchazón.

The lesions of the lichen planus can develop slowly or appear suddenly, being able to affect men and women of any age and whose cause is not well defined; However, the emergence of these lesions is related to a reaction of the immune system, which is why it is not contagious.

These skin lesions tend to disappear over time, however, in case they do not improve, the dermatologist may recommend the use of corticosteroid-based medications.

main symptoms

The symptoms of lichen planus can vary from one person to another, however, lesions can appear in the mouth, chest, arms, legs or genital region with the following characteristics:

  • Pain;
  • Coloración reddish or address;
  • White spots;
  • Comezon;
  • ardor.

This illness can also cause the appearance of heridas and blisters in the mouth or in the genital region, hair loss, thinning of the nails and can generate symptoms very similar to those of other changes in the skin.

In this way, the diagnosis of lichen planus is carried out by means of a biopsy, which is the extraction of a small part of the lesion to be analyzed in the laboratory.

What are the types

Flat lichen is a disease that attacks the skin and can be divided into several types depending on the location and characteristics of the lesions, as for example:

  • Oral lichen planus: it is characterized by the appearance of a white lesion, linear in a star-shaped form, which appears mainly in the language and in the body;
  • Hypertrophic lichen planus: it is characterized by red lesions similar to warts;
  • Linear lichen planus: appears as a red line or home on the skin;
  • Lichen planus ampullar: it consists of the emergence of blisters or vesicles around the lesions;
  • nail lichen planus: it is the type that affects the region of nails, leaving them weak and fragile;
  • Pigmented lichen planus: arises from the sun exposure, generally not caused by the beginning and is visible due to the gray color of the skin.

This disease can also affect the scalp, causing breakage of the hair and scarring, and regions of the genital mucosa, the esophagus, the tongue and the mouth.

possible causes

The causes of lichen planus are not well defined, however, it is known that the lesions arise because the body’s defense cells attack the skin and the mucous membranes and can be triggered due to exposure to chemical products and metals, to drugs based on quinacrine and quinidine and hepatitis C virus.

Asimism, skin lesions caused by lichen planus tend to appear suddenly and often arise in stressful situations, which can last for weeks and disappear on their own. However, the lichen planus is a chronic illness, and that’s not to say, it doesn’t have a cure and it keeps coming back every certain time.

How is the treatment performed?

The treatment for lichen planus is recommended by a dermatologist and is based on the use of medications to relieve comezón, such as antiallergic and corticosteroid-based ointments, such as 0.05% clobetasol propionate, and even phototherapy. Find out more about how the treatment for lichen planus is carried out.

As the lichen plan is a chronic illness and can reappear even in treatment, many times the doctor recommends the use of antidepressants and the follow-up with a psychologist.

In addition, it is possible to adopt certain home measures to alleviate the symptoms, such as avoiding the use of soaps and perfumed lotions, using cotton underwear and applying cold compresses in the area where the comezón takes place. Similarly, some studies reveal that green skin can help to reduce skin lesions caused by oral lichen planus.

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Consult a Doctor | Translated by User2937

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The translator user relied on the following text:

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Disclaimer – (English version>) This content has been prepared based on information from research, additional publications, or the translation/verification work of a volunteer editor of this web council. This is a non-profit service. It is strongly recommended that all details and information published be carefully verified. We never allow medication recommendations, medication package inserts or any medication guidance. We never allow partisan politics as information.

Isenção de responsabilidade – (versão em português): Este conteúdo foi preparado com base em informações de pesquisas, publicações adicionais ou no trabalho de tradução/verificação de um editor voluntário deste conselho web. Este é um serviço sem fins lucrativos. É altamente recomendável que todos os detalhes e informações publicadas sejam verificadas cuidadosamente. Nunca permitimos recomendações de medicamentos, bulas ou qualquer orientação sobre medicamentos. Nunca permitimos a política partidária como base para checagem. Para mais informações, leia nossos termos.

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