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Lichen sclerosus in children and adolescents

Dendrinos, Melina L.; Quint, Elisabeth H.

Current Opinion in Obstetrics and Gynecology: October 2013 - Volume 25 - Issue 5 - p 370–374
doi: 10.1097/GCO.0b013e328363a53c

Purpose of review This review of lichen sclerosus in children and adolescents will discuss the disease and highlight the most recent literature.

Recent findings Lichen sclerosus continues to be poorly recognized and misdiagnosed by clinicians. There is growing support for an autoimmune component in the cause of this disease. Recent studies confirm that lichen sclerosus does not resolve after puberty but usually improves. In small case series, topical calcineurin inhibitors are effective as second-line therapy.

Summary Lichen sclerosus is an uncommon, poorly recognized disease in girls and adolescents and is likely to have a chronic course requiring long-term follow-up and treatment. There needs to be increased awareness among providers of this disease as a cause of vulvar itching. Because of the lack of knowledge of the natural course and treatment outcomes, prospective, multicenter studies are needed.

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA

Correspondence to Professor Elisabeth H. Quint, MD, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Michigan, L4000 Women's Hospital, 1500 East Medical Center Drive, Ann Arbor, MI. 48109, USA. Tel: +1 734 232 3897; fax: +1 734 647 9727; e-mail:

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