- Deepti Gupta, MD
Deepti Gupta, MD
- Assistant Professor of Pediatrics (Dermatology)
- Department of Pediatrics and Division of Dermatology
- Seattle Children's Hospital
- University of Washington School of Medicine
- Erin Mathes, MD
Erin Mathes, MD
- Associate Professor of Dermatology
- Departments of Dermatology and Pediatrics
- University of California, San Francisco
Lichen striatus is an acquired, asymptomatic, and self-limited linear inflammatory skin disorder that predominantly affects children . The eruption is typically unilateral, involves most often the extremities, and follows the lines of Blaschko in a continuous or interrupted pattern. The onset is sudden, with full progression over a few weeks and resolution typically within 6 to 12 months.
This topic will discuss the pathogenesis, clinical manifestations, diagnosis, and treatment of lichen striatus.
Lichen striatus is a relatively uncommon disease that most frequently occurs in children 5 to 15 years of age. However, it may occur at any age, from early infancy to adulthood [2-7]. Lichen striatus has been reported in all ethnic groups and appears to be more common in females [3,5-7]. There are a few reports of familial cases [3,8-12].
The precise etiology of lichen striatus is unknown. Viral infections, trauma, hypersensitivity reactions, vaccines, medications, and pregnancy have been proposed as triggering factors [13-17]. A positive personal or family history of asthma, atopic dermatitis, or allergic rhinitis has been reported in 60 to 85 percent of individuals with lichen striatus, suggesting that atopy may be a predisposing factor [5,18].
The distribution of lichen striatus along the lines of Blaschko (lines corresponding to the direction of growth of cutaneous cells during embryogenesis (figure 1)) suggests that lichen striatus is a condition of cutaneous mosaicism, due to somatic (postzygotic) mutations that produce abnormal keratinocyte clones during early embryogenesis. These aberrant clones may remain silent until a triggering event causes a break in immunologic tolerance and initiates an autoimmune response [4,19]. Potential triggers include viral infections, vaccines, trauma, pregnancy, hypersensitivity reactions, and medications [5,9,13-16,20-22].To continue reading this article, you must log in with your personal, hospital, or group practice subscription. For more information on subscription options, click below on the option that best describes you:
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