Lichen Planus in Childhood: A Series of 316 Patients

Authors

  • Deepika Pandhi M.D.,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Dermatology and Sexually Transmitted Diseases, University College of Medical Sciences and Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital, University of Delhi, Delhi, India
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  • Archana Singal M.D., M.N.A.M.S.,

    1. Department of Dermatology and Sexually Transmitted Diseases, University College of Medical Sciences and Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital, University of Delhi, Delhi, India
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  • Sambit N. Bhattacharya M.D.

    1. Department of Dermatology and Sexually Transmitted Diseases, University College of Medical Sciences and Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital, University of Delhi, Delhi, India
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Abstract

Lichen planus (LP) is infrequently seen in children and the clinical presentation is often atypical. We conducted a retrospective analysis of clinical features and treatment response in childhood LP to date. The clinical profile and treatment response data of patients younger than 14 years old with LP (entered in a predesigned pro forma study) from January 1997 to June 2011 were analyzed. The treatment was administered according to a predetermined departmental protocol and was comprised of topical steroids with or without oral dapsone or corticosteroids. Patients were evaluated for response, adverse effects, and relapse. The study population consisted of 316 children (166 boys, 150 girls), or 18.7% of the total registered patients in the LP clinic. The mean age was 10.28 years (range 2–14 years). Cutaneous lesions were seen in 96.2%. Involvement of the oral mucosa was detected in 18%, nails in 13.9%, scalp in 8.2%, and genitalia in 4.4%. Classic LP was most prevalent (53.8%), followed by eruptive (16.5%), hypertrophic (8.2%), linear (6.9%), and lichen planopilaris (6.3%). LP pigmentosus, annular, and atrophic variants were encountered infrequently. Topical corticosteroids were the most common treatment used in 69.5% of patients, 28.8% of whom had excellent response at 6 months, although 38.8% failed to follow up. Dapsone was prescribed in 20% and systemic steroids in 9.8% of patients. We report the largest series to date of LP in childhood, with a more varied clinical presentation than in previous series. The course and response to treatment were similar to those in adults.

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