Lichen planus (LP) is an inflammatory papulosquamous disease which may affect the squamous epithelium of the esophagus. We reviewed six patients with esophageal lichen planus (ELP) seen at Mayo Clinic Rochester between 1984 and 1998. The presenting symptoms were dysphagia (in all six patients) and odynophagia (two patients). Cervical esophageal strictures were seen in four patients; average number of esophageal dilatations required was 15 (range, 10-18). Esophageal biopsies demonstrated the classical histologic findings of ELP in two patients, and a lymphocytic infiltrate in the other four. Concomitant lichen planus (LP) was seen at other sites in five patients: all five had oral LP preceeded by ELP symptoms in all five; three had genital LP preceeded by ELP symptoms in all three; two had dermal LP, preceeded by ELP symptoms in one. Proton pump inhibitors were tried unsuccessfully in all patients. Four patients were started on systemic steroid medication; three had resolution of symptoms within 1 month.
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