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Vitiligo Treatment and Cure

Vitiligo is white spot disease or leukoderma, which is characterised by white patches on the skin. It is irregular and occurs on the face, groin, armpits, nostrils, back, limbs and hands and so on. Vitiligo treatment is determined by the pattern of spreading and the intensity of the condition. The three patterns of vitiligo are segmental, focal and generalised patterns. Individuals with a fair complexion are benefited by not going out in the sun.

Exposure to sun, results in sun tan, thereby making the affected area obvious. Use a sunscreen, especially those, with a high sun protection factor (SPF), as high as 30. Cosmetics camouflage the patches; and considered one of the most effective vitiligo treatments. Certain make up solutions are dihydroxyacetone and dyes. These conceal the patches and provide a temporary solution.

Cure for vitiligo is also possible by means of repigmentation therapy. This procedure helps in the synthesis of new pigment cells. This happens from the pre existing cells, which are present at the edge of the patch, in the patch or from the bottom of the hair follicles. This repigmentation therapy is also referred to as PUVA (Psoralen and Ultra Violet A light). Psoralen drug is given to the individual. Exposure to sun follows this step. The ultraviolet radiation activates the drug and triggers the pigmentation process. This also increases the melanocytes at the surface of the skin, thereby contributes to pigmentation.

Psoralen is also commercially available as ointments and lotions, which are topically applied on the affected area. Corticosteroids are also helpful. Vitiligo laser treatment proves beneficial for vitiligo lesions. Excimer laser is a chemical laser, which makes use of ultraviolet rays.

Long term treatment for vitiligo includes depigmentation therapy. This is the annihilation of the remnant melanocytes. Mono benzyl ether of hydroquinone is a chemical, which is used as a bleaching agent. Topical application of the above said chemical helps in depigmentation of the skin. This is a process, which takes a year for vitiligo cure.

Tattooing is yet another method to treat vitiligo. A surgical instrument helps in imparting colour to the skin patches. But, this procedure proves harmful, especially in the lips, as herpes simplex infection is possible. Treatment of vitiligo is also possible with blister grafting. Suction results in blisters, which is transplanted at the area of depigmentation.

Vitiligo treatments are expensive and the type of treatment depends on the severity of the condition.

Submitted on January 16, 2014