Vitiligo is a skin disorder characterized by skin cells losing the ability to make pigment, leading to areas of complete pigment loss.
Vitiligo affects men and women equally and can occur at any age.
The exact cause of vitiligo is unknown, although there is some thought that it may be caused by an autoimmune response, in which the body’s immune system attacks its own healthy skin cells. Sometimes, a medical work-up and lab studies are advised if your dermatology provider determines that these are necessary.
SUN AVOIDANCE AND PROTECTION: Where there is loss of pigment in the skin, strict sun avoidance is very important. The affected areas are very susceptible to burning and damage from the sun. If sun avoidance is not possible, sun protective clothing or adequate sunscreen is strongly recommended. To learn about sunscreen options we offer, visit our store.
TOPICAL TREATMENTS: Topical steroids, prescribed by your dermatologist, can help improve the condition with minimal negative side effects. Other topical treatments may be recommended for areas on the face or eyelids.
LIGHT TREATMENTS: Narrowband UVB light therapy (phototherapy) is often a recommended treatment option for patients with widespread vitiligo. XTRAC® (excimer laser) treatment is also considered a safe and effective treatment for vitiligo. These treatments do require patients to come into the office 2-3 times per week and can take weeks to months before improvement is seen.