lichen sclerosusThis is not a very common disease, and little is really understood about it and why it happens, but Lichen Sclerosus (also known as Lichen sclerosus et atrophicus), is a skin disorder that results in whitish patches and scarring in the genital and anal areas of women.

This is not a sexually transmitted disease and is not even infectious; rather it is thought to be caused by other infections, a genetic predisposition, due to thyroid imbalances or due to autoimmune disorders.

The condition is more common in women than men, particularly menopausal women and symptoms may include:

  • Sometimes no symptoms may be noted.
  • White raised skin patches may be noted around the anus and the vulva area. These are usually flat and may appear to glisten.
  • Itching may be experienced in and around the genital area.
  • There could be shrinkage and thinning of the genital area.
  • Passing urine and defecation could be painful.
  • Having sexual intercourse may also be painful.
  • Sometimes this disease may not show any symptoms and may not be in the genital area, in which case white spots may appear on other parts of the body and there could also be apparent plugs in the hair follicles and visible sweat glands.