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Written by Dr. Ringpfeil

Vitiligo

Vitiligo is a disease manifested by loss of pigment in the skin. It is an acquired disorder that often runs in families. It is characterized by depigmentation or total lack of melanin pigment. It can occur in small localized areas or be widespread. Fifty percent of individuals develop the disease before the age of 20 and 25% develop the disease before the age of 10. The cause is unknown but is believed to autoimmune in nature. It is more commonly seen in individuals with endocrine disorders such as thyroid disease.

DIAGNOSIS

The diagnosis can be made clinically in the presence of well demarcated areas of depigmentation found symmetrically over boney prominences such as the knees or around body orifices such as the mouth, eyes and perianal or periurethral area. When the diagnosis is unclear, a skin biopsy may need to be done.

MANAGEMENT

Patients with vitiligo must be advised to follow strict sun protection. The areas of skin affected by vitiligo cannot tan and will burn with sun exposure. Sunburns raise the risk of skin cancer. Also, when normal surrounding skin is tan the loss of pigment is more noticeable. Also, since vitiligo can be associated with endocrine disorders such as thyroid disease, blood tests to rule out an underlying disorder may need to be performed.

TREATMENT AND MEDICATION

Treatment options are influenced by the amount of skin involved and the location. Often a trial of treatment with a topical corticosteroid is the initial treatment choice. Topical immunomodulators such as Protopic Ointment or Elidel Cream have also been shown to be effective and are more appropriate for extended use on delicate areas. A series of narrowband ultraviolet light treatments (NB-UVB) have also been found to be very effective. The excimer laser delivers NB-UVB directly to specific skin areas without affecting normal surrounding skin. Ringpfeil Advanced Dermatology has an excimer laser and is proud to be able to offer excimer laser treatment to our patients. Excimer has come to be preferred over older light treatment modalities such as PUVA (psoralens plus ultraviolet A). The advantage of excimer over PUVA is shorter treatment times, decreased risk of phototoxic reactions, and the ability to use excimer in children, pregnant women and in individuals with kidney or liver disease since no oral medication is utilized. In cases where depigmentation due to vitiligo is very extensive, permanently removing all remaining pigment can be offered for cosmetic reasons.

COPING

For individuals who are self-conscious about vitiligo involving visible areas such as the face and hands, cosmetic products under the brand names of Covermark or Dermablend are available for camouflage. The National Vitiligo Foundation is an organization that can be a resource for educational materials and support groups.

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Last updated: 05/25/2018 9:32 AM,

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The doctor explained treatment options

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What WE DID WELL

(Answers:674)

Loved everything! Thank you so much

#12019-05-11

comfortable setting, nice office, helpful/polite staff

#22018-10-31

The doctor was very personable, she explained each procedure in detail and answered all my questions. Dr. Ringpfeil has a very pleasant and reasurring mannaer, here staff is very efficent and welcoming.

#32019-03-31

Everything was great!

#42019-07-06

Dr. Ringpfeil listened patiently and explained treatment and diagnosis thoroughly

#52019-10-16

The electronic registration.

#62019-03-16

Both the doctor and medical assistant were very knowledgable.

#72010-11-09 10:53:55

original paintings are wonderful

#82010-12-15 11:34:02

I didn't have to wait at all to be shown to the back. The physician anticipated all of my questions and was very nice.

#92019-06-22

Yes your patiences and willingness to answer all my questions.

#102019-05-22

What can we do better?

(answers:373)

was fine

#12019-10-13

keep on doing excellent customer service skills

#22019-02-16

less waiting time for follow up appointments

#32018-10-21

uhmm.. you're office was too nice. It made me jealous.

#42019-01-06

Thank you

#52011-02-23 17:11:29

Less wait time for an appointment.

#62010-11-17 15:23:04

My experience in the office today was absolutely excellent

#72019-04-10

It was good

#82019-04-19

If you continue the same level of care that I received today, I will be thrilled.

#92019-07-15

Evening hours

#102019-08-27
Customer Rating : 4.5

Based on 110 ratings