Lichen Nitidus: Tiny Bumps on the Skin

Lichen Nitidus is a bumpy rash that typically develops in children and young adults, but it can affect anyone. It’s not known what causes it, but luckily it isn’t harmful. “It appears as clusters of bumps or papules which are smaller than a pinhead. They tend to be flat-topped and round, and usually the same color as your skin, although sometimes they are pink or hypopigmented,” says Dr. Kellie Reed, board certified Dermatologist at Sanova Dermatology. They commonly appear on the chest, abdomen, arms, and genitals. Sometimes they may be itchy.

There may be a link between lichen nitidus and lichen planus, eczema, Crohn’s disease, and juvenile arthritis, although the links aren’t understood.

It’s important that if you have a skin condition that you are unsure of that you see a dermatologist who will be able to diagnose the condition by inspecting the rash or by taking a biopsy.

In most cases, lichen nitidus will clear up on its own. If it is itchy or causes concerns, your doctor may prescribe topical or oral corticosteroids to reduce inflammation, retinoid, or antihistamines to relieve itching. “A topical drug called tacrolimus can also help,” shares Dr. Reed. ” if these treatments fail, an in-office procedure known as phototherapy can also be used.”

The bottom line is that lichen nitidus is a harmless skin condition. Due to the vast amount of skin conditions that are contagious, it’s important to be diagnosed by a doctor to be sure that it is indeed lichen nitidus.

Contact Us

If you’re looking for a dermatologist you can trust in the Austin area, please contact us. The skin care experts at Sanova Dermatology can help you with all your skin concerns and needs.

Photo credit: Mehta V, Balachandran C (2008). "Generalized lichen nitidus in childhood". Indian J Dermatol. 
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