Skin | Skin care problems

Vitiligo - A Common Cause of Loss of Pigment on Skin
Jul 01, 2016
Vitiligo - A Common Cause of Loss of Pigment on Skin

Skin problem is one of the biggest problems for the masses all around the orb. All and sundry are very conscious and insecure for their skins as everyone wants to look beautiful and attractive.

Vitiligo is a skin problem where white patches develop on the skin, which is caused due to loss of pigment in the skin. These ugly patches may occur at any location of the body and many parts of the body skin are affected at a time, but it has noticed that the sun exposed areas are mostly affected.


This skin condition is basically classified into two types; segmental vitiligo (SV) and non-segmental vitiligo (NSV).

1. Segmental vitiligo:

In this kind of skin problem, the areas associated with dorsal roots from the spinal cord are basically affected. It spreads at a higher pace than the NSV and affects to the autoimmune diseases is lesser than the NSV.

2. Non-Segmental vitiligo:

The NSV is the most common type of this skin condition and some kind of symmetry is found in the location of the patches. The new patches used to appear in any body part in a large area or can remain restricted to a small extent.

People at risk

Half of the affected people are under twenty years of age and rest are affected before the age of forty years. The people of all races and gender are uniformly affected by this issue.

People who are suffering from autoimmune diseases like hyperthyroidism are most affected by this issue. This serious issue affects 1-2% of the population and this disease can be sometimes genetic and run in families.


There exists a pigment in the body known as Melanin, which is responsible for the color of the skin. When the cells known as melanocytes forming this pigment get destructed then the loss of pigment of the skin occurs which leads to these white patches on the skin.

There is no proper explanation behind the cause of this destruction of cells, but it is said in many types of research that it is due to the autoimmune system of the body.  All the races are equally affected by this skin issue, but it is easy to recognize in the case of dark-skinned people.

It has been said that sunburn is a cause of this issue, but it has not been proved by any clear evidence. If a person in the family is already suffering from this trouble then there are chances that future generations may or may not suffer from the same.

Signs and Symptoms

This chronic skin disease used to show its effect before the age of 20 years and before 40 years of age. The symptoms of this chronic disease are;

• The rapid loss of skin pigments from the body, leaving white patches or discoloration.

• Initially appeared patches used to remain stable for a period of time without any changes.

• The affected areas are mainly those areas which are sun exposed, previously injured places, areas around the moles or sites around body openings.

• Rarely, it can show its effects on the eyelids and hairs, hence, it is considered as a rare sign.

• Premature greying of the hair on scalp, eyelashes, eyebrows or beard, usually before the age of 35 years.


This severe skin condition is diagnosed by physical examination as its symptoms are clearly visible. There is no recognized treatment for curing this issue, but with the implication of cosmetics, re-pigmentation using UV light therapy, depigmentation of unaffected skin areas, corticosteroid creams, and skin grafting, the appearance of the problem can be reduced and can remain restricted to the affected area only.

Bottom Line:
It is not one of the painful diseases, but it affects the emotional and psychological condition of a person as it can make you a standing joke among the crowd and is more severe, effective and difficult to get rid than the pain.


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