TMI WARNING: Got a docs appointment in morning- Ive had a long term problem with itching 'down below', last doc gave me a steriod cream which helped but only short term- but ive noticed over the year i tend to get fishers (tear) quite easily and bleed, from scratching. But ive also noticed that my inner and out labia are kinda swollen, so got the mirror out and something is NOT right! So i confinded in my mum and she tells me my grandma has 'Lichen sclerosus' which is a skin condition of the vulva So i googled...and my symptoms are spot on, only im not bad enough to have developed server scar tissue! What i dont get is why didnt my previous doctor pick up on this if its what i have??? I may not be able to have a vaginal delivery and people with this condition do not heal well and tear very easily, so im super scared but im not going to be fobbed off with creams! Going to demand to see an OB and get a biopsy ect because ive had it for atleast 4 years and is only getting worse! Anyone hear of this, or supper with this??? HELP supersquish xxx
Hi supersquish, I have LS and hope I can give you some useful advice.
First of all - steroid creams (eumovate, trimovate, dermovate) are the standard treatment of choice for LS; you are not being fobbed off, a consultant probably wouldn't prescribe anything different. You may have to use it for a long time to see results, and as LS is a relapsing and remitting condition, you might feel it is doing nothing, but don't stop using it. However, some consultants won't prescribe steroidal creams in pregnancy because there is a small risk of cleft palate (opinions differ on this, and the risk in any event is strongest in the 1st trimester).
Secondly, LS can be quite difficult to diagnose and it is quite rare in women of childbearing age (most cases develop after the menopause or in young girls). I was undiagnosed for 12 years. Because of the way LS manifests itself in the skin, a biopsy doesn't always confirm LS even if you have it. Have you had a vulval biopsy before? Personally, I wouldn't be going back for second!
Thirdly, for LS you need to see a consultant gynaecologist or a dermatologist who specialises in vulval disease rather than an obstetrician. They should be able to assess you and write a letter supporting you if a c-section is indicated. I had a c-section on account of my LS and it was no trouble to get the obstetric consultant to agree once I had my gynaecologist (two gynaecologists actually) say one was necessary.
Here is a link to the British Society for the Study of Vulval Diseases vulval clinics in the UK. You should ask for a referral to one of these. If you want to go privately and are in London, I can recommend Professor Wendy Reid or Miss Deborah Boyle if you want to see a gynaecologist. Dr Fiona Lewis is a vulval dermatologist who is also very highly regarded.