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Esophageal Lichen Planus: Case Report and Review of the Literature

Abraham, Susan C. M.D.; Ravich, William J. M.D.; Anhalt, Grant J. M.D.; Yardley, John H. M.D.; Wu, Tsung-Teh M.D., Ph.D.

The American Journal of Surgical Pathology: December 2000 - Volume 24 - Issue 12 - p 1678-1682
Case Report

Involvement of the esophagus by lichen planus is a rarely reported condition. The histologic features of esophageal lichen planus, which may differ from those of cutaneous disease, have only rarely been illustrated. We describe a 58-year-old woman with skin and oral lichen planus who presented with dysphagia and an esophageal stricture that were ultimately diagnosed as esophageal lichen planus. Multiple esophageal biopsies demonstrated a lichenoid, T cell-rich lymphocytic infiltrate, along with degeneration of the basal epithelium and Civatte bodies. Correct diagnosis of esophageal lichen planus is critical because of its prognostic and therapeutic distinction from other more common causes of esophagitis and stricture formation.

From the Division of Gastrointestinal/Liver Pathology, Department of Pathology (S.C.A., J.H.Y., T.T.W.), the Division of Gastroenterology, Department of Internal Medicine (W.J.R.), and the Department of Dermatology (G.J.A.), The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.A.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Susan C. Abraham, MD, Division of Gastrointestinal/Liver Pathology, Department of Pathology, Ross Building, Room 632, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, 720 Rutland Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21205-2196, U.S.A.

© 2000 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.