Lichen sclerosus and young women

Lichen sclerosus (LS) is a skin condition that can affect skin on any body part – more often than not, a person may be diagnosed with LS on their stomach, back or even on their genitals. Men, women or children may be diagnosed with LS. When LS affects the genitals, it can make erections painful among men and can make vaginal intercourse painful (or even tear-inducing) among women.

A particularly frustrating aspect of this condition is that there is little understanding about how it develops. This new research study, however, suggests that there may be a link – at least among young women with LS – between oral contraceptives (the birth control pill) and the development of LS. You may read the abstract here and you can read more about LS here.

About Dr. Debby Herbenick

Dr. Debby Herbenick

Dr. Debby Herbenick is a sex researcher at Indiana University, sexual health educator at The Kinsey Institute, columnist, and author of five books about sex and love. Learn more about her work at