Lichen Sclerosus, also spelled Lichen Sclerosis, is a chronic inflammatory skin disorder that most commonly affects post-menopausal women, but has recently shown to affect anyone at any age. The male to female ratio is however 1:3 to 1:5.
As of now the cause of Lichen Sclerosus is yet to be determined, but research shows that it might be due to hormonal imbalances, genetics, or trauma. There is also research debating if it is an autoimmune disorder, due to an overactive immune system. Many women that have Lichen Sclerosus also suffer from other autoimmune disorders, such as thyroid disorders.
Lichen Sclerosus causes scarring and tearing of the genital area, and in some cases even fusing. The most common symptoms are white patches, “cigarette paper skin”, itching, painful sex, or bleeding.
Left untreated it is associated with a greater degree of scarring and an elevated risk of vulva cancer (5-10%).
Currently there is a huge gap in the research of what actually can assist in living a less painful life with Lichen Sclerosus, and there is no cure for it. The most effective treatment as of today is to use steroid creams such as clobetasol. There is also some private clinics around the word offering different treatments that have shown success in some women, but as of now research is indicating that steroid creams are the only efficient treatment to minimize the risk for further scarring and vulvar cancer.
When it comes to nutrition and Lichen Sclerosus there is definitely a need for more research to determine if there is a correlation between the two. But some of us that suffer from it can definitely see that there is a correlation.
We also know that there is definitely other things that we can do for our Lichen Sclerosus to minimize the flare ups, such as taking care of our bodies through exercise, mental health support, and complementary approaches.