Vitiligo

Vitiligo is a skin condition whose exact cause is unknown. In vitiligo, patches of skin lose their pigmentation when the pigment producing cells, the ‘melanocytes’ are attacked and destroyed. It may affect the skin, mucous membranes, eyes, inner ear or hairs leaving white patches. The usual type of vitiligo is called ‘Vitiligo Vulgaris’ (means: common vitiligo). Variant types include linear, segmental, trichrome and inflammatory vitiligo.

This disease affects an estimated 1% of the world’s population. It affects individuals of all ethnic origins and both sexes, but is much more easily noticed on darker skin as areas that fail to tan. It is hereditary in one third of those affected. Vitiligo often starts on the hands, feet or face, and frequently pigment loss is progressive. Half the patients first notice vitiligo before 20 years of age. It often appears in an area of minor injury or sunburn.

It is believed that vitiligo is an autoimmune disorder (autoimmune means the body’s own immune system turns on itself). Certain white blood cells direct the destruction of melanocytes. People with vitiligo are also somewhat more prone to other autoimmune diseases, such as alopecia areata, autoimmune thyroid disorders, Addison’s disease, pernicious anemia, and diabetes mellitus.

The diagnosis of vitiligo is usually straightforward, and no special testing is needed. While vitiligo is a cutaneous problem and does not affect the health directly, it is disfiguring and may be psychologically traumatic. The condition cannot be cured at present, but treatments are available that may be very helpful. Medical treatments target the immune system, and try to reverse the destruction. Surgical treatments are less commonly done, and transplant healthy melanocytes from other areas. Both treatments may be difficult and prolonged.

The goal is to restore the skin’s color by restoring healthy melanocytes to the skin (repigmentation) allowing the skin to regain its normal appearance. That means that new pigment cells must come from the base of hair follicles, from the edge of the lesion, or from the patch of vitiligo itself if depigmentation is not complete. Repigmentation occurs slowly as the cells creep back in over months to years.

Sun-induced darkening of the surrounding normal skin makes vitiligo look worse. All patients with vitiligo should always protect their depigmented skin against excessive sun exposure by wearing protective clothing, applying a UVA/UVB sunscreen daily, and avoid prolonged sun exposure.

To begin a dialogue with our team, contact us at one of our following locations:

cardura tablets buy, buy zithromax

You Might Also Enjoy...

Signs Your Child Has a Malignant Mole

Have you noticed that your kid has a few more moles than usual? That's not surprising, as many kids will develop them after spending time in the sun. But what should parents do if they discover unusual moles?

4 Tips For Getting the Best Out Of Retinoids

Retinoids are vitamin A derivatives and can be used to treat issues like acne, aging, and sun damage. Whether over the counter or prescription, they can be an effective solution to many skin problems.

Pumpkin Spice Skincare Recipes You'll Love

With the summer fading and fall approaching, pumpkin products are more popular than ever. Pumpkin might be popular in your coffee, muffins, and candles, but did you know? It also has a ton of benefits for skincare.

The Best Ways To Treat Scars

We've all been there - seeing a cut or scrape leave behind an unsightly scar. While it's tempting to spend tons of time and money on over-the-counter treatments, the truth is they aren't always effective!

How Microneedling Renews Your Skin

Heard about microneedling, but not sure what it means? We’ve got a quick explanation that we think will take you from on the fence to biggest fan in no time flat!

Skincare for Kids 101

Back to school season is here! Soon you’ll be back to school year routines, and there’s no better time than now to implement a new skincare routine for your kids.