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Clin Exp Dermatol. 2009 Jun;34(4):476-80. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2230.2008.02969.x. Epub 2008 Nov 27.

Lichen simplex chronicus as a symptom of neuropathy.

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Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Afyon Kocatepe University, School of Medicine, Afyon, Turkey.



The main cause of lichen simplex chronicus (LSC) is not known but there is evidence to suggest that neurological abnormalities may be implicated in its aetiology.


To investigate neuropathy in patients with LSC on the limbs.


In total, 23 consecutive patients [15 women (65.2%) and 8 men (34.8%); mean +/- SD age 48.2 +/- 14.03 years, range 20-71] with LSC on the limbs were included in the study. Mean +/- SD duration of disease was 22.86 +/- 21.38 months (range 1-60). Radiography, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and electrophysiological studies were performed for all patients.


In total, 8 patients (34.8%) had LSC on the arms and 15 patients (65.2%) had LSC on the legs; 3 (37.5%) of the 8 patients with LSC on the arms and 6 (40%) of the 15 patients with LSC on the legs had radiculopathy in the electrophysiological studies. The prevalence of radiculopathy in patients with LSC on the limbs was higher than in asymptomatic subjects in the electrophysiological studies.


Damage to the peripheral nervous system, such as radiculopathy and neuropathy, can play a critical role in the aetiology of LSC on the limbs. Both nerve-root compression in MRI scans and radiculopathy in nerve-conduction studies are common findings in asymptomatic subjects, but they seem to be more common in patients with LSC on the limbs. Therefore, these patients should be evaluated for the possibility of underlying neuropathy.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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