Vitiligo is a specific type of leukoderma and it is characterized by depigmentation of the epidermis. It affects at least one in every hundred people in countries throughout the world including the UK. It affects people of both sexes equally, and it affects all races. It can begin at any age, although about fifty percent of people with vitiligo develop it before the age of twenty five. Vitiligo affects 1-2% of the American population. Most people with vitiligo have white patches in many areas of the body.The disorder affects both sexes and all races equally; however, it is more noticeable in people with dark skin. Vitiligo is associated with autoimmune and inflammatory diseases, commonly thyroid overexpression and underexpression. Vitiligo appears as sharply circumscribed, cosmetically disturbing, white spots that stand out.
Vitiligo on the scalp may affect the color of the hair (though not always), leaving white patches or streaks. It will significantly affect facial and body hair. Vitiligo may also be hereditary; that is, it can run in families. Children whose parents have the disorder are more likely to develop vitiligo. In fact, 30 percent of people with vitiligo have a family member with the disease. However, only 5 to 7 percent of children will get vitiligo even if a parent has it, and most people with vitiligo do not have a family history of the disorder. In some cases, mild trauma to an area of skin looks to cause new patches – for example around the ankles (caused by friction with shoes or sneakers). Vitiligo may also be caused by stress that affects the immune system, leading the body to react and start eliminating skin pigment.
Causes of Vitiligo
Symptoms of Vitiligo
1. White patches (depigmentation) on their skin.
2.Graying of the hair on your scalp, eyelashes, eyebrows.
3.Loss or change in color of the inner layer of your eye (retina).
4.Loss of color in the tissues that line the inside of your mouth (mucous membranes).
Treatment of Vitiligo
PUVA treatment (8-methoxypsoralen, 5-methoxypsoralen, trimethylpsoralen plus UVA) was often the most practical choice for treatment, especially in widespread vitiligo in patients.Patients who have small areas of vitiligo with stable activity are candidates for surgical transplants.Punch biopsy specimens from a pigmented donor site are transplanted into depigmented sites. Topical steroid therapy steroid creams may be helpful in repigmenting (returning the color to) white patches, particularly if they are applied in the initial stages of the disease. Psoralen photochemotherapy – also known as psoralen and ultraviolet this is probably the most effective treatment for vitiligo available in the United States. .Depigmentation treatment involves fading the rest of the skin on the body to match the areas that are already white. For people who have vitiligo on more than 50 percent of their bodies, depigmentation may be the best treatment option. .Immunomodulator creams such as Protopic and Elidel also cause repigmentation in some cases, when used with UVB Narrowband treatments.
Source by Sushma Jain