Vitiligo may run in families. Children whose parents have the disorder are more likely to develop vitiligo. However, most children will not get vitiligo even if a parent has it. Many people develop it in their twenties, but it can occur at any age. The disorder affects all races and both sexes equally, however, it is more noticeable in people with dark skin.
It is a disease in which milky white patches of skin appear on different parts of the body especially where the skin is exposed to the sun. The patches may be on the hands, feet, arms, face, and lips. Vitiligo can also affect the mucous membranes (such as the tissue inside the mouth and nose) and the eye.
The cause is not known. Vitiligo is an autoimmune disease when your immune system mistakenly attack and destroy the melanocytes in the skin.
People with vitiligo often have hair that turns gray early.
How Is Vitiligo Treated?
Treatment may help make the skin look more even. The choice of treatment depends on:
- The number of white patches
- How widespread the patches are
- The treatment the person prefers to use.
Some treatments are not right for everyone. Current treatment options for vitiligo include medical, surgical, and other new techniques. Most treatments are aimed at restoring color to the white patches of skin.
Medical treatments include:
- Topical as Sunscreens (is a must) along with topical creams that you put on the skin and it works for mild cases
- Medicines that you take by mouth
- A treatment that uses medicine plus ultraviolet A (UVA) light (PUVA)
- Removing the color from other areas by chemical peeling so they match the white patches.
Surgical treatments include:
- The most advanced effective technique is to use certain medical treatment along with Microneedling (Dermapen) seems to be able to induce pigment spread.
- Skin grafts from a person’s own tissues. The doctor takes skin from one area of a patient’s body and attaches it to another area. This is sometimes used for people with small patches of vitiligo.
- Tattooing small areas of skin.