Jun 21, 2023
The condition known as lichen planus affects the skin, hair, nails, mouth, and genitalia. Lichen planus frequently manifests on the skin as flat, purple, itchy pimples that grow over several weeks. Lichen planus develops lacy white patches in the mouth and vaginal mucosa, occasionally accompanied by uncomfortable ulcers. It is an Autoimmune disorder and It is mediated by T cells. It affects the Basement Membrane Zone.
Read this blog further to get a quick overview of this important topic Lichen Planus: Causes, Clinical Features, Diagnosis, Treatment, Complications for DERMATOLOGY to ace your NEET PG exam preparation.
The exact cause of this condition is unknown. In an external agent, it can be an Infection that's why we check for Hepatitis B, and C in patients or it can be a Drug.
Some basic drugs which can cause Lichen Planus are:
Below are listed a few of the clinical manifestations of lichen planus:
It affects flexures more than extensors but can be present anywhere on the body. The common sites are flexors of the wrist or on the ankle.
The Lichen Planus is hilled with hyperpigmentation, which is called post-Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation. hyperpigmented Macules are known as Hilled legion of Lichen Planus.
The occurrence of fresh skin lesions from an existing dermatosis on sites of cutaneous damage in otherwise healthy skin is known as the Koebner phenomenon. It is also referred to as the isomorphic response and the Köbner phenomenon. Lichen Planus also shows Positive Koebner's phenomenon. Papules developed along the line of trauma.
The whitish streaks on the regions of the hand lens. This happens because of hypergranulosis (the granular layer is increased in thickness).
In the mucosa, oral lesions are present which are symptomatic. The symptoms include pain & burning on eating hot spicy food.
On examination, we can find White reticular lacy (lacy white streaks) like patterns in the oral mucosa, especially on the mucosa.
In this condition, we can find a Whitish reticular lacy pattern on the mucosa. Oral Lichen Planus can affect other mucosa also such as genital or rectal mucosa.
In this condition, we can find Ring like region at a glance with central clearing. It can also be present in the other parts of the body.
In this condition, we can find rough, dry, brittle nails. Longitudinal ridging of nails is the most common finding. The nails look rough and there is dryness known as Sandblasted nails. Trachyonychia means rough, dry, brittle nails. Lichen Planus is one of the causes of Trachyonychia.
It is the most specific finding. Pterygium is the wing-shaped extension of the proximal nail fold on the nail plate. It causes a tent-like appearance of the nail which is known as the tenting of the nail.
Lichen Planus is an important cause of Scarring alopecia. In this condition, The hair follicles are destroyed. Scarring occurs with no growth of hair. This is an irreversible condition.
In Tuberculosis we can find Lichen Scrofulosorum and Lichen Amyloidosis. But these are not Lichen Planus. Lichen is something that is Purplish or has a Lichenified or lichenoid histology.
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In Stratum Corneum- Hyperkeratosis (increased thickening) can be found.
The most important changes occur in Stratum Basale. The infiltrate targets the Stratum Basale layer and basal Cell Degeneration is seen. Keratinocyte turns into apoptotic bodies (undergoes apoptosis) which are called Civatte bodies.
Melanin (dendritic melanocytes) is also targeted. They release their melanin which falls into the dermis and leads to melanin incontinence. Melanin is engulfed by Macrophages and forms melanophages. The rete ridges are saw-toothed.
Saw-toothed rete ridges.
Max Joseph Space- It is Space that is created between the epidermis and dermis by the infiltration of lymphocytes. The basal cell degeneration and the infiltrate in the dermis are together referred to as Interface Dermatitis.
It is usually seen in children. It is shiny, skin-colored Papules that can be present on elbows, knees, and glans. They may or may not be symptomatic. The Papules on elbows and knees are also known as Lichenoid Papules.
On Histopathology, you see that the rete ridge is engulfing a ball of inflammation. It appears like the epidermis is engulfing this Infiltrate. So, this is called a ball in claw appearance. Treatment is when you give Topical steroids, Topical Calcineurin.
Your doctor will likely conduct a physical examination, ask you questions about your symptoms and medical history, and diagnose your ailment. You could also require some testing. These could consist of:
Biopsy. Your healthcare professional takes a small sample of the damaged tissue for laboratory testing. The tissue is evaluated to check if it displays lichen planus-specific cell patterns.
A blood test. To check for lichen planus-related health issues, your blood may be obtained. Consider hepatitis C.
Also Read : Modes of Ventilation : Types and Uses
Treatments we use in Lichen Planus can be:
All these can be used as systemic therapy for Lichen Planus.
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