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Year : 2016  |  Volume : 2  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 28-30

Acitretin: A good treatment option for hypertrophic lichen planus

Department of Dermatology, Dr. L. H. Hiranandani Hospital, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Correspondence Address:
Rameshwar M Gutte
Department of Dermatology, OPD No. 112, 1st Floor, Dr. L. H. Hiranandani Hospital, Powai, Mumbai - 400 076, Maharashtra
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2455-3972.184096

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Lichen planus (LP) is a chronic inflammatory dermatosis of unknown etiology characterized by pruritic violaceous papules. Here, we share our experience of a long standing case of disseminated hypertrophic LP treated with oral acitretin. A 48-year-old married male, presented with multiple highly itchy dark raised lesions over bilateral legs since 15 years. There was no history of any preceding trauma, any recent drug intake before eruption, dental metal fillings, hepatitis, or any other infection. Patient was treated with oral antihistamines and topical moisturizers and topical steroid and salicylic acid combination ointments in the past with only temporary relief. Clinical examination revealed multiple hyperpigmented keratotic papulonodular lesions over bilateral legs and few on feet. Mucous membranes were normal. He was started on acitretin 25 mg twice daily along with oral hydroxyzine 25 mg and topical moisturizer and clobetasol and 6% salicylic acid ointment. After 2 weeks, patient noted up to 30–40% improvement in lesions and some became flat. Furthermore, itching was reduced. His lipid and liver profile showed no abnormality. Acitretin 25 mg bid and antihistamines were continued along with moisturizer for another 2 weeks. Since patient tolerated acitretin well without any major side effects,except for mucosal dryness and slight hair loss, it was continued for another 1 month. At the end of 2 months, there was almost 90% improvement in most of the lesions. Acitretin was stopped after 4 months. There was no recurrence reported up to 6 months posttreatment. Our case of HLP showed a good response to acitretin and it can be considered one of the treatment options for such severe, highly itchy cases of LP affecting quality of life.

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