Vitiligo

What is Vitiligo?

Vitiligo is a disease often causing the loss of skin colour, extent and rate being unpredictable. At London Dermatology Clinics we see patients affected by vitiligo in many different areas inlcuding large parts of the body, inside mouth and even eyes. Normally, the colour of your hair, skin and eyes are determined by melanin. In vitiligo, cells that produce melanin (melanocytes) stop functioning or die. Common areas for vitiligo to appear include the eyes and nose, within body folds such as under the arms and in the groin as well as the hands and face. Even hair can be effected by vitiligo and completely lose its colour.

Vitiligo affects all races and people of all skin types, at London Dermatology Clinics we find vitiligo to be more visible in our patients with a darker skin tone. Although not life threatening or contagious, vitiligo can often make the sufferer lose self confidence and esteem sometimes leading to depression. Due to the psychological effect vitiligo has on people the dermatologists at London Dermatology Clinics will aim to clear your vitiligo as fast as possible allowing you to get on with your life.

Vitiligo can start at any age, but usually occurs before 20, and it is for this reason that London Dermatology Clinics sees all patients from all age groups including paediatric patients. It is difficult to predict how your disease will progress. If left untreated it is rare for the skin gets its colour back. At London Dermatology Clinics we understand that vitiligo can be a cause of your stress. Our dermatologists are highly experienced in this area of dermatology and will take a results based approach to treating your vitiligo. Please call us today to make an appointment a private dermatologist at our Harley Street dermatology clinic.

Symptoms of vitiligo

Major symptoms of vitiligo are as given below :
  • Skin Discolouration
  • Premature whitening or greying of the hair on your scalp, eyelashes, eyebrows or beard
  • Loss of colour in the tissues (mucous membranes) that line the inside of your mouth and nose
  • Loss of or change in colour of the retina of the eyeball
  • Discoloured patches around the armpits, navel, genitals and rectum
Depending on the type of vitiligo you have, the discoloured patches may cover:
  • Almost all body parts
  • Only one side your body
  • One or only a few areas of your body

Causes of vitiligo

Vitiligo occurs when melanin-forming cells die or stop producing melanin. There are a number of reasons why this happens including:
  • A disorder or autoimmune disease in which your immune system attacks and destroys the melanocytes in the skin
  • Family history (heredity)
  • A trigger event, such as sunburn, stress or exposure to industrial chemicals

Treatments

Although are currently no cures for vitiligo, London Dermatology Clinics offer a wide range of treatment options that can help your symptoms drastically improving the appearance of your skin. Our experienced dermatologists can prescribe topical corticosteroids, creams, ointments as well as internal medication to help restore your skin pigmentation. London Dermatology Clinics also recommend using sunscreen to avoid sunburns. Depending on the severity of your condition, our dermatologists will tailor your treatment plan with a results orientated attitude.

If you are suffering with vitiligo and are seeking treatment, call London Dermatology Clinics now to book a consultation with one of our experienced dermatologists and get your treatment plan started today.