Definition Actinic cheilitis is a chronic degenerative disorder of the lower lip.
Etiology Long-terme xposure to sunlight.
Clinical features In the early stage, mild erythema and edema followed by dryness and fine scaling of the lower lip vermilion border are the presenting signs. As the lesion progresses, the epitheliumb ecomes thin and smooth, with small whitish-gray areas intermingled with red regions and scaly formations (Fig. ). Erosions and tiny nodules may develop. The lesion is premalignant, and usually occurs in men over 50 years of age.
Laboratory tests Histopathological examination.
Differential diagnosis Leukoplakia, lichen planus, lupus erythematosus,early squamous-cell carcinoma, cheilitis due to radiation.
Treatment Protection of lips fromsunlight. Vermilionectomy in severe cases.