Vitiligo is a common skin condition that is manifested by the appearance of white spots. It mainly affects the face and also on the arms and hands. What is its treatment and what are its causes?
Definition: What is vitiligo?
Vitiligo is approx skin disease characterized by the appearance of white spots. This depigmentation is explained by the disappearance of melanocytes, cells responsible for the production of melanin, the main pigment of the skin.
There are several forms of vitiligo. the generalized vitiligo presents more or less symmetrical spots on the two body parts. Its development is unpredictable. the segmental vitiligo has only one or two spots in a limited area. This form affects mainly children and adolescents. the vitiligo universalis expands rapidly and affects the whole body.
Not contagious, vitiligo is relatively common. It actually affects between 1% and 2% of the population.
Symptoms of vitiligo
The characteristic symptom of vitiligo is the onset of white plateson the skin. They are not painful and usually do not accompany deficiencies or burning sensations. Their size can vary greatly, from just a few millimeters to an area of several centimeters. The most common areas of the body are the hands, feet, arms and face.
thedevelopment of vitiligo is most often forphases and unpredictably. The spots may spread as regressive for no apparent reason.
Causes of vitiligo
Vitiligo is a complex disease, the causes of which are still poorly understood. It would be genetic factor at the origin of melanocyte disappearance. Studies have shown that at least a dozen genes can be associated with vitiligo. In about 30% of cases, family history.
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several risk factors is likely to trigger the onset of the disease such as emotional trauma, intense stress, injury or sunburn. Autoimmune disease could also cause vitiligo: the affected person produces antibodies that will attack the melanocytes.
Treatment of vitiligo
The treatment of vitiligo is intended repigmentation areas of the body discolored. Several techniques are available. the phototherapy consists of irradiation of the skin ultraviolet B. These will then stimulate the melanocytes still present in the body. This method is used mainly in the case of a generalized form. Treatment based onultraviolet A may be proposed but it is more restrictive and less effective.
Repigmentation can also be done through the use of creams or ointments containing corticosteroids. They should be applied shortly after the spots have appeared. Indeed, their effectiveness is inconsistent over time. In the most extreme cases, a skin graft can be considered.