Vitiligo is a skin condition characterized by patches of the skin losing their pigment.The patches of skin affected become white and usually have sharp margins. The hair from the skin may also become white. Inside the mouth and nose may also be involved. Typically both sides of the body are affected.Often the patches begin on areas of skin that are exposed to the sun. It is more noticeable in people with dark skin.Vitiligo may result in psychological stress and those affected may be stigmatized.
SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS:
The only sign of vitiligo is the presence of pale patchy areas of depigmented skin which tend to occur on the extremities The patches are initially small, but often grow and change shape. When skin lesions occur, they are most prominent on the face, hands and wrists. The loss of skin pigmentation is particularly noticeable around body orifices, such as the mouth, eyes, nostrils, genitalia and umbilicus. Some lesions have increased skin pigment around the edges. Patients who are stigmatized for their condition may experience depression and similar mood disorders.
Vitiligo is caused by a loss of pigment in the skin, due to destruction of pigment-forming cells known as melanocytes. The exact cause of the destruction of these cells is not known. One possible explanation might be that the body’s immune system destroys the cells, as in other autoimmune conditions