Lichen Sclerosis

by Sally L
(UK)

I arrived here because I suffer from the auto immune problem Lichen Sclerosis (LS). I have recently read that creams like Progesterone, Testosterone & Oestrogen may help to save the skin...... but I don't know & feel rather confused & frustrated.

Hopefully someone here can point me in the right direction as my uk gp is not helpful on the matter.

Comments for Lichen Sclerosis

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Apr 30, 2015
Lichen Sclerosis
by: Wray

Hi there The cause is unknown, as you're probably aware, some think it could be genetic, some an autoimmune problem. It is more common in women, and more common after menopause, which makes me suspect a lack of progesterone, excess oestrogen. Higher levels of free testosterone have been found too. Treatments tried have been topical testosterone, which has shown no benefit, topical progesterone, a slight benefit, corticosteroids which seems the favoured treatment, photodynamic therapy see here. Plus phototherapy, ie UV light which ultimately makes vitamin D3, and calcitriol, which is a potent natural hormone derived from vitamin D3. Both phototherapy and calcitriol have shown remission of symptoms. Progesterone can help in some cases, but not hugely it seems, see here. Quite possibly the strength of cream used was insufficient, in the study above it was 2% progesterone. And if it was only used in the vulva region, far too little would have been applied. I recommend 100-200mg/day, it would be impossible to get this via a daily or twice daily vulva application. So it's best applied at least twice a day to the vulva, and internally in the vagina. Then the remainder on other areas of the body. Progesterone is an anti-inflammatory, so should give some relief.Vitamin D deficiency could be a cause, please have a test done. Most of us have far too low a level, and the older we get the less we absorb from the sun. Vitamin D affects every cell, it prevents hyperkeratosis and it's an anti-inflammatory. It's excellent for other skin problems. The phototherapy and calcitriol treatments yielded remission of symptoms. Both these treatments require specialised personnel, but vitamin D is readily available and cheap. I would suggest taking a minimum of 5,000iu's per day, possibly 10,000iu's if you find your level low. As an idea, you could get some vitamin D, open a capsule, add the contents to the progesterone cream and rub that on. This is another paper giving a general view and treatment options on Lichen sclerosus. One interesting fact, a lack of vitamin D reduces the benefits of progesterone. Take care Wray

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