Background Lichen striatus is a well-known, acquired, self-healing, linear inflammatory dermatosis. Lichen striatus occurring in adults tends to be more extensive and itchy than in children, sometimes requiring symptomatic treatment. The therapeutic approach usually adopted is topical steroids, even though prolonged use may lead to several side-effects, particularly cutaneous atrophy.
Objective To report the results of an open, off-label study on the use of pimecrolimus 1% in the treatment of diffuse, nonresponsive forms of lichen striatus.
Methods Three adult patients suffering from relapsing or disseminated and itchy lichen striatus received topical application of pimecrolimus 1% cream (Elidel®, Novartis Pharma, Basle, Switzerland) twice daily for 6 weeks, or until complete disappearance of the cutaneous lesions.
Results All patients experienced rapid healing of the dermatosis, without any recurrence for at least 14 months.
Conclusion Our preliminary results show that pimecrolimus may represent a useful therapeutic alternative for lichen striatus, although further studies on a larger number of cases are needed to confirm its safety and efficacy in the treatment of this condition.