Lichen ruber planus, or just lichen ruber, is a fairly common skin disease. Lichen ruber produces small, reddish-purple, raised but flat papules that merge into larger, jagged spots. They often appear on the wrists, ankles or scratches in the skin, but sometimes also in the mucous membranes of the mouth or genitals. The rash itches, and if located in the genital area, the skin can become sensitive and painful. Lichen ruber tend to develop over one or a few weeks. Lichen is not contagious and usually disappear by themselves within a couple of years. Lichen simplex is a rash of constant and intense itching, sometimes also in the night-time. The itching can be a lasting problem some time after the curing of another disease, such as psoriasis in the genital area. Even after the initial disease has been cleared, lichen simplex symptoms may persist because the person is unable to stop scratching. Lichen sclerosus is a similar skin disease, which may cause an impaired sex life for many years before diagnosis. The skin becomes taut, brittle and whitish. In women lichen sclerosus is usually manifested as thin and damaged skin, eg on the labia. Lichen sclerosis in men often cause a painfully “tight” foreskin, with pain and redness. Later, there may appear white lines on the inside of the foreskin. Lichen of various types can usually be treated with corticosteroids.
warning: graphic images below!
Do you think you might have this condition? Ask a dermatologist