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Home: Diseases & Conditions: Lichen Planus: Symptoms

Lichen Planus: Symptoms And Progress

Symptoms & Progress Of Lichen Planus

Lichen planus affects both men and women of all ages and all the races. Lichen Planus generally affects skin, mouth, nails, scalp, and genital areas. It is not necessary that if you have lichen planus on the skin, you will also get it in the mouth. That also applies to all other possible affected areas. Lichen planus can be confined to only one of the possible affected regions.

Lichen Planus- Skin
On skin, lichen planus generally forms rashes of reddish purple bumps on the lower back, ankles, wrists, neck and legs. The bumps may cause lot of itching and you may have to take medication for that. The color of the bumps changes from red to purple to dark brown over a period of about 18 months to 24 months. After that, some colors that remain, disappear over time and lichen planus clears. Lichen planus may return after an unknown period.

Lichen Planus- Mouth
In the mouth, lichen planus mainly affects the inner cheeks, the tongue and the gums. White lines with dots form a patch and doctors can generally diagnose this by close observation. In case of doubt in diagnosis, a small biopsy is done. Sometimes, the disease in mouth does not cause any problem, but in some people, it causes ulcerations. Those who suffer from such persistent sores in the mouth, may have an increased chance of getting cancer and regular screening of the mouth by a doctor is advisable. You may have to stop eating or drinking any food that may cause acidic reactions and increase the pain. Citrus fruits are to be avoided. Alcohol and tobacco should be avoided. Your doctor will tell you more about the foods that should be avoided in your case.

Lichen Planus- Nails, Genitals And Scalp
In rare cases, lichen planus affects nails. The nail forms ridges and thickens. It may split and also may be lost. In case of genitals, it affects both the sexes. If it affects the scalp, hair loss may occur permanently.

Article created on: July 07, 2006

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