By Gary M. White, MD

Lichen aureus

Lichen aureus is a rare type of capillaritis (or progressive pigmentary dermatosis).


A golden brown or yellowish orange macule or patch from 1-20 cm in diameter is characteristic. Zosteriform lesions may occur. Lichen aureus commonly occurs in young adults, and less frequently in children.


No specific therapy is needed nor exists. The lesion has been reported to resolve spontaneously from 6 months to 18 years (mean 3 years). See capillaritis for more treatment ideas.

Additional Pictures

Zosteriform distribution of lichen aureus.
Lichen aureus Lichen aureus

Young woman with 2 year history of a red/brown patch on just one finger. The second photo was taken 6 months after the first, showing how relatively stable the lesion is. The cause was unknown. The only symptom was slight burning of the skin.
Lichen aureus or progressive pigmentary dermatosis Lichen aureus or progressive pigmentary dermatosis


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