What causes vitiligo?
The precise cause of vitiligo is not well understood. The white areas appear due to loss of the pigment (melanin) that gives skin its color and protects it from the sun’s ultraviolet rays. Factors such as stress, physical illness, skin damage, certain chemicals and drugs, pregnancy and severe sunburn may trigger or worsen vitiligo.
It remains unclear what causes damage to melanocytes and their subsequent total inactivation and/or disappearance in vitiligo skin. There are several theories; the most prominent are autoimmune, neurohumoral, related to abnormal detachment of melanocytes from the epidermal layers and autocytotoxic. None are mutually exclusive, and it is likely that each of them partially contribute to the disease development.
The current thought is that vitiligo represents a group of different disorders with a similar outcome: the appearance of white patches on the skin.
The convergence theory states that stress, accumulation of toxic compounds, infections, autoimmunity, genetic predisposition, altered cellular environment, and impaired melanocyte migration can all contribute to the vitiligo initiation process. Autoimmune mechanisms are likely to underlie generalized vitiligo, while a more localized phenomenon (i.e. the altered activities of sensitive nerves in the skin) may be responsible for segmental or focal vitiligo. A site of a skin physical trauma may develop vitiligo; it is called a “Koebner phenomenon.”
Abstract from Vitiligo Q&A »»»
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What is coming?
VITFriends Fundraising and Awareness Concert in Boston
Featuring: M.C. - Mary-dith Tuitt Jazz vocalist - Katani Summer Steel drum instrumentalist - Justin Petty Vocalist - Emily Orji and Dr. Victor Huan...30 April 2017 14:30, Salvation Army Kroc Center, 650 Du...
Vitiligo Walk-A-Thon in Fort Dallas
The annual Vitiligo Walkathon is organized by Dallas Fort Worth Vitiligo Support Group on May 20, 2017. This is an event held to raise awareness about vitiligo in the...20 May 2017 09:00, Dallas, Texas
Is there a special diet for vitiligo?
We have specifically looked into claims that some food supplements or special diet may ease symptoms of vitiligo, or completely reverse it, and found no firm scientifi...
Can chemicals cause vitiligo?
Yes, certain chemicals can, indeed, induce or worsen vitiligo. Most commonly they include phenols, such as 4-tertiary-butyl phenol (4-TBP, found in adhesives) or 4-ter...
Will it spread?
The condition varies from person to person. Some people only get a few small, white patches that progress no further. Other people get bigger white patches that join u...
Pyrostegia venusta as a folk medicine for vitiligo?
Pyrostegia venusta is a neotropical evergreen vine widely spread in Brazil throughout fields, at the coast, edge of the woods and along roadsides (see photo below). Po...