Vitiligo / White Patches

Vitiligo / White Patches

Vitiligo

This is a skin disorder where one sees a complete pigment loss in the affected areas. This occurs due to the damage of the pigment producing cells (melanocyte). Vitiligo is clinically identified by the development of chalky white macular (flat) patches, which when viewed microscopically are completely devoid of melanocyte.

  • Vitiligo starts as small white patches, first affecting an area with pigment loss, and then spreading with time.
  • The goal of treatment is to stop or slow down the progression of pigment loss.

Signs and Symptoms:

  • Pigment loss produces milky white patches on conducting a Wood’s light examination.
  • Flat areas of normal-feeling skin without any pigment appear suddenly or gradually. These areas have a darker border. The edges are well-defined but irregular.
  • Vitiligo most often affects the face, elbows, knees, hands, feet and genitals. But can affect any part of the body.
  • Vitiligo is more noticeable in darker-skinned people because of the contrast of white patches against dark skin.
  • No other skin changes occur.
  • Your doctor may also perform blood tests to check the levels of Thyroid or other hormones, and Vitamin B12.

Causes:

  • Immune system disorder
  • Hereditary
  • Sunburn or emotional stress
  • Unknown in certain cases

Management at Skin & You Clinic:

  • Topical Corticosteroids: Corticosteroid creams or ointments
  • Immunomodulators: Immunosuppressant creams or ointments, such as Pimecrolimus and Tacrolimus can be used.
  • Phototherapy: Phototherapy is a medical procedure in which your skin is carefully exposed to ultraviolet light. This therapy can be done by itself or after taking a drug that sensitizes your skin to light.
  • Autologous Skin Graft: Skin may be moved (grafted) from normally pigmented areas and placed onto areas where there is pigment loss.
  • Cover-Up Make-Up: Several cover-up make-up or skin dyes can mask vitiligo.
  • Using Sunscreen: It is important to remember that skin without pigment is at greater risk for sun damage. Be sure to apply a broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB), high SPF sunscreen or sun block and use appropriate safeguards against sun exposure
  • Medical Tattooing: by using medical gradient dyes are used for semi-permanent / permanentCosmetic Tattooing over stable, small patches of vitiligo. It has given excellent results for isolated lip vitiligo cases.

Why Skin & You Clinic for Vitiligo (White Patch)?

We, at Skin & You Clinic, assess, examine and treat all dermatological conditions with utmost care. For vitiligo cases, combined approach is generally taken to achieve arrest of disease and maximum possible outcome with Medical Tattooing being routinely done in selected cases at our centre with good results.