Sexual function is adversely affected in the majority of men presenting with penile lichen sclerosus.
Male genital lichen sclerosus (MGLS) is a chronic inflammatory condition which can present with a range of debilitating symptoms. Sexual dysfunction is reported by most women with lichen sclerosus but by relatively few men. This prospective study looked at 78 men with genital lichen sclerosus. Sexual difficulties were experienced by 64 (82%) patients with 54 of the 64 attributing their sexual dysfunction directly to their genital lichen sclerosus. Sexual dysfunction appears to be more common in MGLS than other genital diseases such as psoriasis and sexually transmitted infections. Penile soreness due to active inflammation is the commonest cause of dyspareunia. Psychological factors are also important. Assessment and management of MGLS must include a sexual history as men will not usually volunteer this information. Monitoring sexual function may be useful to assess disease outcome.
Authors: M Shah