If you have noticed the natural pigmentation of your skin turning white, you may be experiencing vitiligo. Depending on the severity and location of the white spots, it can cause a lack of self-confidence and possible embarrassment. The dermatologists at Dermatology & Mohs Surgery Institute have the experience needed to help you with your vitiligo and provide you with treatment options to help you regain your confidence. Learn more about vitiligo and how we can help below.
Vitiligo is a skin condition that causes loss of pigmentation resulting in white spots among the body. The white spots can vary from small, contained patches to larger patches all over the body. It often affects the face, neck and mouth. Vitiligo is considered an autoimmune disorder in which the immune system attacks its melanocytes. This results in depigmentation and white spots appearing. It can occur on all ethnicities but most often occurs on those with dark skin. Once vitiligo is discovered, it is best to get diagnosed by a dermatologist who can then recommend treatment options.
Treatment for vitiligo may include topical medications, light treatment, light therapy or surgery. Our experienced dermatologists can help you determine which is best based on the severity of your vitiligo. Topical medications would be recommended for those with less severe cases and contained patches of depigmentation. The medicine is a corticosteroid applied directly to the skin and works best on those with dark skin and when applied to the face. Results of regained color are seen four to six months after application begins.
With light treatment, a light is used to restore skin color. It is best used on patients with widespread vitiligo. Patients often sit in a light box up to three times per week for several weeks. Results will appear but only last up to four years when treatments will need to begin again. Light treatment can be combined with topical medications for even better results.
Light therapy can help reduce the appearance of vitiligo. A UVA light and a psoralen medicine are used during light therapy to help restore skin color. Psoralen can be applied topically or taken orally. When combined with the UVA light, it can help treat widespread vitiligo on the face, arms or legs. The UVA light treatment takes place twice per week for up to one year.
Lastly, surgery is used as a last resort. After you have tried topical medications, light treatment and light therapy, surgery is recommended and takes a different approach. It takes your naturally pigmented skin and places it where you need skin color restored.
Whichever treatment you and your dermatologist choose, it is important to keep in mind vitiligo can always come back. Unfortunately, there is no permanent solution but these treatment options can help reduce the depigmentation so you can feel more confident.
We look forward to using our experience with vitiligo to provide you the treatment you need. If you are in Bloomington, Illinois or surrounding areas, complete this form. A dermatologist from Dermatology & Mohs Surgery Institute will be in touch to begin the process of vitiligo treatments.
We look forward to serving you. Please let us know who you are and what kind of skin care services you looking for, and we will be in touch to schedule your appointment.