Vitiligo is a loss of pigment in the skin, often resulting in white patches of skin, changes in hair or eye color and other tissues. This disease can affect anyone and is thought to have several possible causes. Although there is no cure for vitiligo, it is treatable, especially if you catch the disease in the early stages.
Signs of Vitiligo
Vitiligo is most noticeable on people with darker skin, but this skin disease can affect any ethnic group and is common in the U.S. It is most common in those under twenty years of age but can appear at any stage in a person’s life. Some of the signs include:
- Patches of light colored skin in areas exposed to the sun, including arms, hands, face and lips – however, these patches can be anywhere on the body
- Premature graying or whitening of the hair on the scalp or on facial hair
- Lightening of the retina of the eyes
- Lighter tissue inside mouth or nose
Vitiligo can occur in only isolated areas or all over your body. The loss of color to the skin, hair and tissues is caused by when melanin-forming cells die or stop forming melanin. The causes vary, but it can be hereditary, caused by an immune disorder or a chemical reaction.
Treatments for Vitiligo
If you have signs of vitiligo, you can seek treatment from your local dermatologist. Depending on your condition, your dermatologist may suggest one of several treatment options to control the symptoms of vitiligo. Some of these include topical creams, laser treatments and light therapy. With treatment, you can reduce the visible signs of this disease that can cause embarrassing changes to your skin, hair and eye color.
Posted on behalf of:
Northwest Georgia Dermatology
840 Church Street
Marietta, GA 30060