Vitiligo has affected an estimated 1-2 million Americans and while there is no cure, vitiligo can be treated. Vitiligo is a condition in which pigment-producing cells in the skin and hair disappear. Visible patches of light skin and hair will occur. This condition is not serious, contagious or due to foods, medications or stress. The exact cause is unknown however it does run in some families. It is thought as an “auto-immune” disease which is believed that normal pigment cells of the skin have been attacked. Vitiligo occurs most commonly on the tops of the hands and feet, around the ankles and wrists, over the elbows and knees, and around the eyes, mouth, nose and genitalia. In most patients, it is a life-long condition having periods of higher activity.
Treatment Options: Treatment is not mandatory however treatment does tend to be more effective early on. Treatment options include sun screen (SPF 30), corticosteroids, ultraviolet light, medications used to stop production or imbalance of internal chemicals that cause melanocyte death, camouflage make-up and XTRAC excimer light therapy.