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May 1986

Lichen Planus: Significant Premalignant Potential?

Author Affiliations

School of Dental Medicine University of Connecticut Health Center Farmington, CT 06032-9984

Arch Dermatol. 1986;122(5):504. doi:10.1001/archderm.1986.01660170028008

To the Editor.—  We wish to comment on the recent article by Odukoya and Shklar that appeared in the September 1985 issue of the Archives1.In our opinion, their article demonstrates the classic error made by those who claim that lichen planus has significant premalignant potential. The misconception rests on the fact that, in cases selected for study, the original diagnoses of lichen planus are either incorrect or unsubstantiated by histomorphologic documentation. With specific reference to their article, the authors state that they selected for study "cases histologically diagnosed as lichen planus." Published photomicrographs, however, fail to satisfy the diagnostic criteria of lichen planus and, on the contrary, show dysplasia with lichenoid features (eg, lichenoid dysplasia). Thus, in all probability, lesions cited in this study bear no relation to lichen planus other than that they share with lichen planus some rather nonspecific clinical and histologic features seen in a

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