Vitiligo

In today’s modern world, the aspects of beauty are well-appreciated and given ample importance. A sense of well being and self-confidence is reflected with a beautiful appearance. The most visible and largest part of the human body is the skin. Apparently, if any imperfection affects the skin, the overall appearance is impaired.

Vitiligo is not a vicious condition. It does no major physical harm to the body. It social value dominates its medical importance. The actual cause of Vitiligo/Leucoderma is still not known. However, from the beginning, evidence from the society show that Vitiligo patients are psychologically neglected as lepers. Vitiligo is often referred to as “Sweta Kustha” literally meaning “White leprosy”. Although, this condition mutilates all races, but the dark skinned populace have been predominantly highlighted due to heavy contrast. In recent times, the emotional effects of skin disease Vitiligo were made conscious among individuals.

Vitiligo is referred to as a genetic-autoimmune acquired skin depigmentation disorder. Research reveals that vitiligo is an autoimmune-related disorder. White spots enclosed all over the skin with sudden loss of the inherited skin colour describes a vitiligo skin. The white patches may occur in different body parts such as feet, hands, face, arms, lips and legs. However, all noticeable white spots of the skin cannot be considered as Vitiligo.

vitiligo-on-backVitiligo has neither been considered as a CONDITION nor a SYMPTOM. Although vitiligo is a harmless skin disease, but at times it can cause massive stress on the affected part, mainly on the individuals with dark skin. Vitiligo does not depend upon the age or ethnic background of an individual. Anyhow, it mostly seems to affect people at infant or old age. Typically, all cases of vitiligo are witnessed in the early period of life. Studies give an evidence of vitiligo predominantly affecting females. In vitiligo diseased condition, the melanocytes cells, which are responsible for skin pigmentation are damaged. Treatment for vitiligo involves therapeutic and investigational procedures. Initially, white patches are seen to develop on the skin. These white patches usually extend towards other locations. The patches may begin as a dot, but subsequently displays as white or hypopigmented macules or patches. This happens because of loss of melanin pigmentation over the affected regions.

Premature hair graying is a common result of vitiligo skin disease. It may also lead to de-pigmentation of the body hair (leukotrichia). Other structures such as pubic hair, eyebrows, and axillary hair may also get infected. In most cases, the natural transformation of depigmented to re-pigmented will not be observed.

Even though, at the time of onset, patches are small, but with time they often widen and change in shape. Lesions may vary in size from millimeters to centimeters. In some patients, the lesions may begin as a solitary spot, and may not even spread for the whole of the life. On the other hand, in some patients, the spread will be hasty from one location to another. The speed with which this skin condition spreads can not be predicted. In some people, discontinuous spread is also observed. An aggressive spread is majorly witnessed in people who are affected in areas such as fingertips, although it is not a rule.

The researches in the medical field are still in doubt about the actual motive behind defective development or destruction of Melanocytes. The processes involved in Vitiligo are well-pointed out in some reasonable theories. In brief, the genetic and immunological, neural or stress factors are found to be responsible factors for causing Vitiligo. The vitiligo causes may fall into either of the following cases:

  1. The loss of skin colour may lead to the destruction of the Melanin (pigment cell)

  2. The skin development gets arrested owing to the malfunctioning of the melanin synthesis.

The causes of Vitiligo:

In the skin-disorder Vitiligo, the genetic factors an important role. The individuals with Vitiligo are seen to have multiple susceptibility, incomplete penetrance, and genetic heterogeneity. The genes which are considered to be susceptible to Vitiligo are namely those associated with melanin biosynthesis, a response to oxidative stress and regulation of auto-immunity. According to Ayurveda and Allopathic system of treatment, one of the basic and most important cause of Vitiligo is regarded to be auto-immunity. The melanin cells get demolished, owing to the breaking-down of body’s own cell by its immune system. The occurrence of circulating antibodies in the blood of Vitiligo patients, confirms the presence of auto-immune pathogenesis in the body. The survival rate of Melonocyte decreases or they get damaged, causing Vitiligo, due to intrinsic melanocyte deformities such as a typical rough endoplasmic reticulum, processing or receptor dysregulation, ineffectual synthesis or early apoptosis. Vitiligo can also occur owing to disturbance in oxidant-antioxidant systems, trauma or stress, and hormonal connections. Other factors included in disorder initiation: continuous practice of tight clothes, regular interaction with certain rubber hand gloves, and prolonged use of certain medication. However, in children, these may not be the actual cause of vitiligo.

Types of Vitiligo:

Segmental or Unilateral Vitiligo:

It is a unilateral type of vitiligo and usually the areas of skin which are associated with dorsal roots from the spine are affected. It often affects body parts such as face, leg or arm. In severe cases, the hair colour of the affected parts such as hand, an eyebrow or an eyelash is also lost. It often has an early onset, which gradually advances for years, and then stops.

Non-segmental vitiligo Or Bilateral Vitiligo or Vitiligo vulgaris or Generalized Vitiligo:

It is the most common vitiligo type, which has ever been reported. The origin of the vitiligo is bilateral, such as both knees and hands. In the initial stage, it usually affects the hands, wrists, feet, fingerprints, or around the mouth and eyes. In the beginning, the individual experiences rapid loss of skin colour. Throughout a person’s lifetime, this start-and-stop cycle continues. The visibility increases as the colour loss tends to propagate, covering a larger vicinity.

Universal: It is rarely seen to occur. In this type, the skin depigmentation can either be complete or nearly complete. It is often observed to be associated with the multiple endocrinopathy syndrome.

Treatment for Vitiligo:

Nowadays, the treatment for vitiligo is finding more importance due to the social and psychological impact on the individual. The largest vitiligo treatment organization in the world is the Vitiligo Support International. Extensive public awareness/enlightenment, altered images, absolute support and policy changes for vitiligo, and skin health, is offered by them. The Vitiligo cover provides all information related to vitiligo treatments, vitiligo cure updates, vitiligo support, and connecting to other people with vitiligo.

The classic treatment method for vitiligo includes: masking, sunscreens, restoration of normal skin colour, and bleaching of normal skin with topical creams to remove normal skin pigment and to stabile colour.

Sunscreens: The normal skin is protected from sun burning through sunscreen lotions. The depigmented skin is preserved from burns and the tanning due to normal skin, is reduced. The lotion consists of a sun protection factor, which prevents skin redness. It is also believed to affect the DNA of the skin cells. However, for that, the rate of SPF should be more than 30.

Masking: Another major choice of individuals is the use of cosmetics to make the white patches on the skin less visible. The methods included in the normal skin restoration are spot treatments or whole body treatment.

Bleaching: Irreversible pigmentation loss is caused due to bleaching. Here, chemicals are used to depigment the normal skin. It helps to make the skin colour more uniform and non-contrasting.

Anti-Vitiligo Oil: An herbal medicine, called Anti-Vitiligo, is used as a natural vitiligo treatment. It is believed that re-pigmentation of skin is induced.

Unconventional treatment: Even though, studies do not provide much evidence, but some vitamins, amino acids, minerals and enzymes are considered to help in restoring the skin colour.

Surgery: There exists different types of surgical treatments:

Tissue Grafting: Splint skin grafting, Suction blister grafting, Punch grafting

Micropigmentation of tattooing: Not very successful results are obtained from tissue grafting and tattooing. Only small repigmentation is noticed.

Cellular Grafting: Melanocyte transplantation (misnomer): The melanocyte cells obtained from the donor site is transplanted to the recipient area. In the treatment of Vitiligo, the basic idea of transplantation plays an important role. Melanocyte maintenance is done using a special media in this procedure.

Laser treatment for vitiligo: Dramatic skin pigmentation results are obtained using a series of excimer laser treatment. Currently, laser treatment is regarded as the latest, effective and the quickest treatment available. Although, there exist many treatment procedures for curing vitiligo, but still laser treatment has been found to be the best option. In this procedure, the melanocytes are stimulated, and thus excellent results are promised.

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  • Samantha Lennartz

    I used to have vitiligo all over my body and although I accept the reasons to not want to get rid of it but personally it was something I wanted to do. I tried a million creams & supplements but nothing ever really did anything for me but I was actually able to dramatically reduce my vitiligo after browsing online and trying different methods. The 3 things that worked for me (do them all):

    1. Mix Turmeric Powder And Mustard Oil. This stuff works amazing by just mixing the oil with the powder, applying to the affected skin and leaving it for about 15mins before drying it off. Repeat daily or more.

    2. Drink water stored in a copper utensil. This will help in increasing the production of melanin in your body and your skin will show reduced whiteness.

    3. Follow every single step in the free video & in the guide seen at naturalvitiligotreatmentsystems.com to get to the root of the problem naturally!!

    Try my advice and hopefully you will get as much luck with getting rid of your vitiligo as i did 🙂 xx