A population based case control study of aetiological factors associated with vulval lichen sclerosus

Claire Higgins (Corresponding Author), Maggie Cruickshank

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We aimed to investigate the association between possible aetiological factors and the risk of developing vulval lichen sclerosus (VLS). A population-based case-control questionnaire study was performed comparing women with a diagnosis of VLS (n=¿92), with those attending a general gynaecology clinic with no known anogenital dermatosis (n=¿66). After adjustment for confounders, factors associated with VLS included a family history of diabetes mellitus (OR=¿7.0, p=¿0.012) and previous pelvic surgery (OR=¿4.75, p=¿0.007). The use of barrier and progesterone only methods of contraception (OR=¿0.19, p=¿0.045), hormone replacement therapy (OR=¿0.209, p=¿0.025) or hayfever (OR=¿0.18, p=¿0.008) appeared to be associated with a reduced risk of VLS. In conclusion, we were unable to confirm many proposed aetiological theories associated with the development of VLS, in particular those associated with autoimmunity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)271-275
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2012



  • Dermatology
  • aetiology
  • autoimmune disease
  • Vulvar Diseases

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