Vitiligo is a disorder in which melanocytes in the skin are destroyed, causing the skin to appear white. There is no resultant functional or structural loss of the affected areas of the body.
Worldwide, it affects about 0.5 to 1 percent of the population. It is more common in patients with autoimmune diseases. Plus, it might run in families.
It usually starts before age 40. The skin condition can affect anyone, though it is more noticeable in individuals with darker skin tones due to the contrast.
The areas most usually affected include:
- the skin around the eyes and mouth;
- inside the mouth;
Common symptoms can include:
- follicular repigmentation that occurs by spreading from the periphery;
- the lesions are depigmented and there are irregularly circumscribed maculae;
- poliosis can occur;
- initial lesions occur most often on the forearms, feet, hands, and face;
- the lesions range from millimeters to centimeters in size;
- the lesions enlarge centrifugally over time at an unpredictable rate;
- these lesions are white, round, oval, well-demarcated, or linear in shape with convex borders.
Note – the condition does not have significant health consequences and is not painful, however, it can affect people psychologically and emotionally.
The cause of the condition is not known exactly, however, most doctors think that it is likely to be an auto-immune disease in which the immune system destroys cells within the body.
Numerous factors may contribute to vitiligo, including:
- a virus;
- an autoimmune disorder, in which the immune system destroys the melanocytes;
- heredity, as it may run in families;
- a genetic oxidative stress imbalance;
- a neural cause;
- a stressful event;
- exposure to chemicals;
- harm to the skin due to a cut or sunburn.
Doctors usually diagnose the condition based solely on a physical examination. But, they may also ask whether:
- you tan easily in the sun;
- there is a history of vitiligo in your family;
- you have tried any treatments already;
- any areas of skin got better without treatment;
- you have injured the affected areas of skin;
- there is a history of other autoimmune conditions in your family.
- superficial skin grafts, particularly in hard-to-treat locations;
- surgery like – punch minigrafting or noncultured epidermal suspensions;
- for very large lesions in dark-skinned suferrers, medicines remove the color of the normal skin;
- counseling to provide emotional support may be beneficial;
- laser therapy – it is effective on limited, stable patches of skin lesions;
- ultraviolet light therapy for lesions which do not affect the joints;
- topical non-steroid medications, like – pimecrolimus and tacrolimus;
- topical steroid creams or ointments to help restore skin color.
Here Are 11 Famous People With Vitiligo:
#1 Steve Martin
He is an American actor, writer, producer, comedian, playwright, author, and musician who won a Grammy, Emmy, and American Comedy awards. Steve Martin has battled vitiligo for a long time.
#2 Winnie Harlow
She is a Canadian public spokesperson and fashion model who gained prominence as a contestant on the 21 cycle of the television series ”America’s Next Top Model.”
Winnie Harlow has been afflicted with vitiligo since the age of 4, but she used her skin condition to her advantage, giving her a memorable appearance which is both alluring and mesmerizing.
In addition, Winnie has posted videos on YouTube about living with the disease. Unfortunately, Harlow was bullied as a child because of her skin condition, leading her to have suicidal thoughts and dropping out of high school.
#3 Joe Rogan
He is an American martial arts color commentator, stand-up comedian, and podcast host. Joe began a career in stand-up comedy in 1988 in the Boston area and moved to New York City two years later. Joe Rogan also suferrers from vitiligo and has discoloration on hand and wrist.
#4 Richard Hammond
He is an English writer, presenter, and journalist, who presented Total Wipeout (2009–2012), Brainiac: Science Abuse (2003–2008), and Planet Earth Live (2012).
However, he is best known for co-hosting the BBC Two car programme Top Gear with Jeremy Clarkson and James May. He also has this skin condition.
He is an American R&B singer, record producer, songwriter, dancer, and actor who successfully debuted solo with the album entitled ”Unleash the Dragon.”
In an interview, Sisqo said – “I had this kind of rash, so I’m taking antibiotics. From what I understand, it is from the emotional stress.”
#6 Michael Jackson
He was an American dancer, entertainer, singer, and recording artist who earned himself the title – the King of Pop.
Michael openly admitted to his vitiligo during an Oprah Winfrey show. In addition, Michael Jackson suffered from lupus (a chronic autoimmune disease which can damage any part of the body), that aggravated his skin condition.
#7 Holly Marie Combs
She is an American television producer and actress who is best known for her roles in Picket Fences (1992–1996), Pretty Little Liars (2010–2017), and Charmed (1998–2006).
Holly Marie Combs has vitiligo on both her hands.
#8 Jon Hamm
He is an American actor who is best known for playing Don Draper in the Mad Men. Jon Hamm’s dormant vitiligo emerged while he was filming this drama series.
#9 Tamar Braxton
She is an American television personality, singer, and actress. Braxton is the founding member of the singing group ”The Braxtons.”
During an interview, Tamar Braxton states – ”I’ve always had it (vitiligo), since I was a young girl. That’s why I tan.”
#10 Scott Jorgensen
He is an American mixed martial artist who had formerly competed for the WEC, UFC, and ShoXC. Jorgensen has vitiligo, which affects most of his body.
#11 Rasheed Wallace
He is an American retired professional basketball player who played college basketball at the University of North Carolina. In 1995, he moved to the National Basketball Association, where he played for 16 seasons. Rasheed Wallace also has vitiligo.