Lichen Planus

This is a common skin disease that may be called a skin disorder. The mucous membranes in your body is affected by lichen planus. The part of the body that is affected by lichen planus becomes inflamed. The skin lesions are left with a distinct characteristics because of the itching sensation that occurs. It can also be manifest in the mouth. Whether on the skin or in the mouth it appears like a rash or lesion. The distinctive features of the disease are itchy inflammatory patches.

The persistence of this affliction is hard to predict. It can last for anywhere between a few months and even a full year. Lichen planus is commonly found to afflict the same people who have other diseases such as colitis or lichen sclerosis which are diseases that come from an alteration in the body’s immunity.

Causes for Lichen Planus

The cause for this illness isn’t completely established. Although it has been proven that certain allergens can trigger the lichen planus disease. An anti allergic reaction inside the body might be provoked by some external irritant. The body’s immune system might also not respond to some reactions that repel the allergens or the stimulus. Therefore, the body’s exposure to allergens results in lichen planus. Since it is something that works from inside it is termed an insidious disease. Even medications, dyes and other chemicals can be including in the offending allergens that cause lichen planus. Lichen planus can also be precipitated by emotional stress. Although during great stress the resulting emotional stress may change the body’s immune system. As with other skin disease, the onset can be quick or gradual. Any one of a group of syndromes including stress, infections such as hepatitis C and immunology deficiency can precipitate the condition. Lichen planus can also be caused by genetic factors.

Lichen planus has been caused by some drugs as well when the body makes a response to the drug and the allergic reaction is lichen planus. A few examples are drugs for high blood pressure, heart diseases and arthritis. Lichen planus can be inherited in some cases.

It first starts as a shiny flat bump with an angular shape. The color is either reddish or purple. It is typically found in patches on the wrists, ankles, lower legs, back and neck. The mouth, genitals and hair can also be affected in some cases. Blisters are not usually found in lichen planus cases. It is not necessary to treat it since it often disappears on its own, but the affected spot may have unceasing and intense itching. Intervention may become necessary at these times. The risk groups include men and women between the ages of thirty to seventy.

Cure for the Lichen Planus

Lichen planus has no proven or known cure. For the itching there are palliatives and the appearance of rashes can be softened with medication to make them less conspicuous. From patient to patient the manifestations and occurrence of lichen planus will differ. Each case of the condition is different. Doctors may also prescribe antihistamines for itch relief.

Since treatment focuses only on giving comfort for the persistent itch, some common smoothening agents that are recommended include baths and applications of wet dressings. Some anti itch ingredients include menthol, phenol and paroximine. When applied to the rashes or lesions, lotions with these ingredients are also effective.

Lichen planus leave behind a dark brown discoloration when it is healing. Although this will eventually fade. A person may get a second attack in rare cases once the first attack of lichen planus has been cured.

The Lichen Planus Occurring in the Mouth

The cheeks, gums and tongue are the most common places it manifests. Lichen planus in the mouth is the most difficult to treat. Lichen planus causes painful sores and ulcers of the mouth in its severe forms. Lichen planus on the skin is the most common form, but in many cases it can be found in oral affliction too and about one third of patients have both the oral and skin lichen planus as the same time.

There are a few misguiding symptoms. Lichen planus can present as a yeast infection. Therefore diagnosis requires biopsies and blood tests. Alcohol and tobacco increase the risk so they should be avoided in order to properly manage lichen planus.

The Occurrence and Ills of Lichen Planus

When lichen planus attacks the nails and damages the nail’s matrix; splitting, thinning and loss of the nail are common. Lichenopilaris is an organism related to this disease that affects the scalp and causes inflammation scars. The inflammation affects the hair follicles and results in patches of hair loss. The middle aged are especially affected by lichenplanus.

Treatment for Lichen Planus

Quick control can be gained through oral steroids. There isn’t a very high morbidity rate. Lichen planus has no high risk of developing skin caner, but the lesions in the mouth show a high incidence of malignant transformation in men and carcinoma in women. In most cases the prognosis for lichen planus is good with most regressing within eighteen months. One study shows that only less than two percent of cases have some recurrence.

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