REVIEW PAPER
Lichen sclerosus: A review of the literature
 
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1
Department of Dermatology, Sexually Transmitted Diseases and Clinical Immunology, School of Medicine, Collegium Medicum, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Poland
2
Institute of Optoelectronics, Military University of Technology, Warszawa, Poland
CORRESPONDING AUTHOR
Marta Kasprowicz-Furmańczyk   

Department of Dermatology, Sexually Transmitted Diseases and Clinical Immunology, School of Medicine, Collegium Medicum, University of Warmia and Mazury in Olsztyn, Wojska Polskiego 30, 10-229 Olsztyn, Poland. Tel.: +48784092806.
Submission date: 2020-01-03
Final revision date: 2020-09-18
Acceptance date: 2020-09-18
Online publication date: 2020-11-04
 
Pol. Ann. Med. 2020;27(2):230–237
 
KEYWORDS
TOPICS
ABSTRACT
Introduction:
Lichen sclerosus (LS) is a chronic inflammatory dermatosis which may lead to scarring and atrophy of the tissues. It has predilection for the skin and mucoses of anogenital area in men, women and children. The extragenital lesions occur less frequently. The most common symptoms are itching, pain and dyspareunia. The true prevalence of this disease is unknown and probably underestimated due to the underdiagnosis. Therapy of LS often causes many difficulties.

Aim:
The aim of our review of the literature is to discuss the diagnostic and therapeutic difficulties of LS that may come across doctors of various specializations. We reviewed the literature regarding the etiology, clinical, medical and surgical management of LS.

Material and methods:
We performed a comprehensive research of the literature in PubMed, Medline and other electronic databases between 1956–2019 using the key words: ‘lichen sclerosus,’ ‘balanitis xerotica obliterans,’ ‘kaurosis vulvae.’ We reviewed 54 articles.

Results and discussion:
The clinical features and the management vary depending on the age and sex of the patient. To properly treat and prevent possible complications of LS, an interdisciplinary approach to patients care and timely diagnosis of the disease are extremely important. The essence of treatment is to control symptoms, prevent and treat complications and search for early signs of cancer.

Conclusions:
LS is a disease that presents numerous challenges for doctors specializing in dermatology, gynecology, urology and pediatrics. An interdisciplinary approach is crucial to achieve therapeutic success and patient’s satisfaction.

CONFLICT OF INTEREST
None declared.
FUNDING
None declared.
 
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