What is Vitiligo? Vitiligo can develop as a result of hormonal changes


What is Vitiligo?

Vitiligo can develop as a result of hormonal changes, stress, sun exposure or skin injury.​ It is not contagious and does not cause physical discomfort or pain. It may have an emotional or psychological effect on those who have it. Although there are treatments for vitiligo, there is no cure.

What causes vitiligo?

The exact cause of vitiligo is unknown. It occurs when the cells that produce melanin die or stop functioning. Vitiligo affects people of all skin types, but it may be more noticeable in people with darker skin. For reasons not known, it often appears in several members of a single family. Vitiligo can also be associated with other autoimmune conditions, such as hyperthyroidism, Addison’s disease, pernicious anemia and alopecia areata.

Vitiligo is a skin condition in which white patches appear on the skin. Any part of the body may be affected, and most people with vitiligo have white patches on many areas. The hair that grows on areas affected by vitiligo sometimes turns white.

The exact cause of vitiligo is unknown. It may be an autoimmune condition, which means the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks and destroys certain cells within the body. In the case of vitiligo, the cells destroyed are those responsible for producing melanin, the pigment that gives your skin its colour.

Vitiligo often first appears as a pale patch of skin that gradually turns completely white over a period of weeks or months. The edges of the affected skin are often more noticeable than the patch itself because they lack pigment while your surrounding skin remains its normal colour. Vitiligo usually affects exposed areas such as your hands, feet, arms, face and lips.

Vitiligo can start at any age but usually appears before age 40. It affects men and women equally and all races equally. Vitiligo has been reported to affect roughly 1 per cent of the global population (that’s about 65 million people) regardless of ethnicity or gender.

It is a condition that causes the loss of skin color in blotches. The extent and rate of color loss from vitiligo is unpredictable. It can affect the skin on any part of your body. It may also affect hair and the inside of the mouth.

Vitiligo occurs when pigment-producing cells (melanocytes) die or stop producing melanin — the pigment that gives your skin, hair and eyes color. The involved patches of skin become lighter or white.

It’s not clear what causes these pigment cells to fail or die. Theories range from autoimmunity, a process in which your immune system mistakenly attacks and destroys certain cells in your body to a genetic disorder caused by more than one gene that affects the production of melanin.

Vitiligo is not life-threatening or contagious but can present challenges for those who have it:*

Vitiligo is a disease in which skin loses its color due to the loss of pigment cells. The extent of depigmentation varies from person to person and involves different areas of the body. The cause of vitiligo is unknown. It may be an autoimmune condition in which immune system attacks and destroys pigment cells (melanocytes). Some other theories suggest that melanocytes destroy themselves or that several genes may be involved. It can affect people of all races at any age, but mostly appears in people younger than 20 years old. There is no cure for vitiligo, but treatment may help prevent or slow the progression of pigment loss.

About one to two million Americans have vitiligo. In most cases, the only sign of a problem is the loss of skin color in blotches. These blotches usually appear on sun-exposed surfaces such as the hands, feet, arms, face, and lips. Vitiligo may also affect hair, inside the mouth and nose, and around the eyes.

Vitiligo is not life-threatening or contagious. It does not cause physical discomfort or any other health related problems except when it occurs with certain other medical conditions such as thyroid disease and Addison’s disease (rare adrenal gland disorder

Melasma is a skin condition that creates discolouration, which is often referred to as brown patches. The patches can develop on the face, neck, arms or abdomen. It is most common in women with darker skin tones (Fitzpatrick Skin Type III-VI), and it commonly affects pregnant women, which is why it is sometimes referred to as the ‘pregnancy mask’.

The cause of melasma isn’t fully understood and there are many factors that have been suggested to play a role in its development. There are some known triggers though, including sun exposure, hormonal changes (such as pregnancy and taking contraception pills), genetic factors and cosmetics.

The best way to prevent melasma from worsening is to avoid direct sunlight, use high factor protection on your face and body, and consider wearing a hat when you are out in the sun. There are also treatments available for melasma depending on its severity. In mild cases topical creams can be used to reduce the discolouration. For more severe cases such as those that have not responded to topical treatments or those that cover large areas of skin, laser therapy may be recommended by your dermatologist or doctor.

Melasma, also known as chloasma or “the mask of pregnancy,” is a common skin condition characterized by flat, gray-brown skin discoloration. Melasma most often appears on the face, but it can occur anywhere on the body that is exposed to the sun, such as the neck, forearms and hands. Women who are pregnant or taking birth control pills are at increased risk for developing this skin condition.

The exact cause of melasma is unknown. However, research suggests that exposure to sunlight and female hormones may play a role in its development. Certain factors that may increase your risk for melasma include:

• Pregnancy: Melasma often first appears during pregnancy and is thought to be triggered by hormonal changes. This form of melasma is often referred to as the mask of pregnancy and typically resolves after delivery (although it may take months to disappear completely).

• Birth control pills: The use of oral contraceptives containing estrogen or progesterone may trigger melasma or make existing cases worse.

• Family history: You’re at increased risk of developing melasma if you have a family history of this condition.

Melasma is a skin condition that causes brown to gray-brown patches, usually on the face. Most people get it on their cheeks, bridge of their nose, forehead, chin and above their top lip. It also can appear on other parts of the body that get lots of sun, such as the forearms and neck.

Melasma is common in women, especially pregnant women and those taking birth control pills. It also occurs in men, but this is less common.

Melasma can be hard to treat. In some cases, it gets lighter or goes away by itself without treatment. Sometimes treatment is needed to help lighten the skin.

There are several types of melasma:

Epidermal melasma: This involves only the top layer of your skin (epidermis). The affected area looks dark brown with well-defined borders. This type of melasma responds best to treatment because it’s easier to reach the pigment in this layer of your skin with lasers or prescription creams.

Dermal melasma: The pigment lies deeper in your skin (dermis). The affected area looks more like a bruise than brown spots and doesn’t respond as well to treatment. It’s harder to reach the pigment in this layer with


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