Cicatricial pemphigoid is a blistering disease that mostly affects the mucous membranes, that is, the moist linings of the mouth, the eyes, the nose and the throat.Sometimes only one or two of these areas are affected at first, and the condition may spread to other areas, including the skin, if it is not treated. The autoimmune reaction most commonly affects the mouth, causing lesions in the gums, but it can also affect areas of mucous membrane elsewhere in the body. Cicatricial pemphigoid is a condition that primarily affects middle-aged or older adults. Either sex can get the disease, but women are affected slightly more often than men.
The most serious problem associated with untreated cicatricial pemphigoid is possible blindness if the lining of the eye is involved. The word "cicatricial" means "scarring", and if the disease affects the eye, the scarring that results often leads to blindness if the condition is not diagnosed early enough and treated properly.
The type of treatment for cicatricial pemphigoid usually depends on the extent of the disease. There are several ways to treat pemphigoid, including cortisone-type drugs that suppress the immune reaction, or a sulfa-type drug called dapsone.
Cicatricial pemphigoid cannot be cured. The symptoms, however, can usually be controlled with the right medication or combination of medications.