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Lichen Planus

What is Lichen planus?

A skin disease that appears in form of non-infectious itchy rash, lichen planus can affect many parts of the body including arms, legs, mouth, nails, scalp and genitals. Although the exact cause is not known, it is thought to be triggered by the immune system. The immune response may occur during viral infections, due to an allergen or under stress. Lichen planus is not contagious and cannot be transmitted sexually.

In most cases, this is not a serious condition but it does get uncomfortable. And there are instances when times rare variations of lichen planus can get rather painful.

What are the symptoms of this condition?

The common signs of lichen planus include:

  • Purple-pink coloured bumps or lesions with level top – these can be found anywhere but typically appear on wrist, inner forearm or ankles
  • Lesions appearing and spreading over a duration lasting between two weeks and few months
  • Itching on and around the rashes
  • Lesions developing in the mouth – these become painful or cause a burning sensation
  • Formation of blisters that become scabby after splitting open
  • Thin white lines on the rashes
Erosive lichen planus is a rare form of this disorder and causes painful ulcers in mouth or around genital organs.

What causes lichen planus?

Why lichen planus occurs is not yet clear. A theory suggests that it is an autoimmune disorder. This implies that a person’s immune system reacts in way against the skin and other parts of body considering them foreign. When this occurs the body begins to attack itself and causes lichen planus rashes.

Certain medicines taken for high blood pressure and coronary diseases or the ones to prevent malaria fever can causes rashes that are the symptoms of this condition. In some rare instances, dental products such fillings for tooth, implant abutments may trigger lichen planus. In that condition the material needs to be removed and replaced by a non-allergic alternative. Familial bullous lichen planus is an uncommon genetic condition but the usual form of this skin disease does not run in families.

At times, people with Hepatitis C virus also get lichen planus. Your dermatologist may check to see whether you have this virus.

Am I at risk of developing lichen planus?

Lichen planus can affect anyone irrespective of age and gender although women are more likely to get the oral form of this condition than men. Other factors that put you at risk include:

  • Genetics or other family members having the problem
  • Exposure to certain chemicals that act as allergens for skin problems – these may include arsenic, gold, iodide compounds, diuretics, some kinds of dyes and also antibiotics.

How to prevent this condition?

Like most other skin conditions, lichen planus cannot always be prevented since it is triggered by the immune system of the body. But other conditions that cause allergies on your skin should be avoided. The following tips can be used to stop this skin disorder from getting worse:

  • Stay away from stressful conditions
  • Avoid scratching the rashes – you can cover them with a bandage to avoid infections
  • Soothe the itch by applying cool cloth or, if possible, use oatmeal bath treatment – oatmeal bath products are available at some chemist shops.
  • Avoid injuries to your skin – wounds can cause outbreak of skin problems, rashes and scars.

To avoid worsening lichen planus of mouth –

  • Quit smoking, chewing tobacco and intake of alcohol
  • Get a diagnosis test for oral cancer from your dentist or dermatologist
  • Brush and floss twice daily
  • Get professional teeth cleanup by your dentist twice a tear
  • Do not consume foods that are crispy and salty or made from tomatoes and also refrain from having too many citrus fruits and caffeine rich products.

Treatment at Skin Alive

Lichen planus often goes away by itself but the symptoms are bothersome and early treatment brings relief. At times dermatologists prescribe antihistamine pills to alleviate itching. Topical corticosteroid in form of cream or ointment also helps to reduce swelling and redness. If the condition lasts for a long time or there are many lesions corticosteroid pills may be recommended. Other forms of treatment include retinoic acid (applied on skin or given as pill) and tacrolimus ointment or pimecrolimus cream.

Skin Alive’s remedy for lichen planus helps to reduce inflammation and rashes caused by the condition. We have the topical, oral, injectable, light and laser based treatments that work to give you a clear skin and freedom from itching and burning sensations. To eliminate or tone down the appearance of rashes on face and other parts of body we use:

  • Serum Oxy-jetting with Propolis Concentrate – While reducing rashes, the serum fights bacteria, increases hydration and gives a radiant glow to skin.
  • Qswitch Laser (Medlite C6) - The light that the laser delivers breaks the stubborn pigmentation in internal layers of skin to fine powder and this is washed away in the metabolic process.
  • CO2 (Carbon dioxide) Laser - It involves fractional delivery system for light energy to treat skin selectively and improve its complexion.
  • Affirm Fractional Laser - This is a skin rejuvenation system that removes blemishes, and pigmentation to tone your complexion.
  • NdYAG – As a minimally invasive laser therapy, Nd:YAG lightens deep set marks and improves the appearance of your skin

Your Appointment

When you visit Skin Alive your treatment plan and procedure will be prepared as per the diagnosis results and your medical history. As with other skin conditions, we consider your allergies and personal health before prescribing any oral medicine or topical application. The laser treatments for lichen planus are given in relaxing ambience and there is no pain or discomfort.

Skin Alive encourages all its clients to ask any questions that they may have regarding their skin problems. We like to develop cordial and trust based relationships with you and almost half of clientele comes through recommendations.

Call us on +91-8010503503 to book your appointment.

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