Lichen nitidus

Lichen nitidus is a rare inflammatory skin condition that usually presents with small bumps (skin-coloured) in children. It usually begins in childhood, particularly preschool and school-aged children, or in young adult life. It affects both sexes equally and occurs in all races.

Typically lichen nitidus presents as a localised bumpy skin eruption involving the flexor aspects of the forearms, backs of hands, the penis, chest, abdomen and buttocks, although any site can be involved including the face.

They can be described as pinpoint papule with a diameter of 1-2mm ,usually the same colour as the skin however in darker patients can be hypo- or hyper pigmented.

Although the clinical presentation will suggest the diagnosis, lichen nitidus usually requires a skin biopsy to be confirmed. The histology of lichen nitidus is very typical and described as the ‘claw and ball’ appearance.

Treatment is usually not required and usually resolve within 1 year. Treatment may be requested in the case of itch or involvement of cosmetically sensitive sites. The use of narrowband UVB therapy, photochemotherapy or simply sunlight have been shown to give relief and resolution. Also, treatment with topical corticosteroids and other topical agents have been used.