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J Dermatol. 1995 May;22(5):316-23.

Clinical and histopathologic analysis of the relationship between lichen planus and chronic hepatitis C.

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  • 1Department of Dermatology, School of Medicine, Kitasato University, Kanagawa, Japan.


A prospective clinical investigation of 45 patients with lichen planus (LP) demonstrated a significant association between LP and chronic hepatitis C. Anti-hepatitis C virus (HCV) antibodies were found in 17 (37.8%) of the 45 LP patients. This was significantly higher than in the controls. This higher prevalence of anti-HCV antibodies was found equally in both male and female patients in the three types of LP; cutaneous only type, mucous only type, and both cutaneous and mucous type. Most of the patients with positive anti-HCV antibodies had abnormal values of transaminase enzymes and/or a past history of chronic hepatitis. Histological and immunohistological investigations of three cases with LP and chronic hepatitis C demonstrated some morphologic similarities between these two diseases. Histopathologic findings of both LP and chronic hepatitis C were based on a T lymphocytic infiltrate with keratinocyte or hepatocyte damage. The degrees of infiltrating cells positive to UCHL-1, MX-panB, Leu-7, and human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-DR antibodies in the chronic hepatitis C lesions seemed to be similar to those in the LP lesions. These results may support a possible relationship between LP and chronic hepatitis C and the hypothesis that LP may be associated with chronic liver diseases as a result of a cytotoxic attack on the hepatocytes.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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