Lichen sclerosus can cause intense vulvar irritation, vulvar structural changes and is associated with a 5% risk of squamous cell cancer of the vulva. Historically lichen sclerosus has been thought to be an autoimmune disease that does NOT involve the vaginal tissues but rather the external vulvar skin. Lichen PLANUS, a very similar skin disease, does involve the vagina-and in approximately 40% of patients, the mouth-and is treated similarly. However, Dr. Libby Edwards has recently published cases in which the vagina was found to have lichen sclerosus. Certainly this is new information and warrants further investigating. Click here to view this newly published article.
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