Segmental Vitiligo

The chronic skin condition known as Vitiligo causes depigmentation of sections of skin. This happens when melanocytes, the cells that make pigment, or give color to the skin, die or are malfunctioning.

Vitiligo may be classified in various ways. One of the two most common and easily understandable categories of Vitiligo is the Segmental form of Vitiligo (other one being the Generalized form of Vitiligo).

Where Generalized form of Vitiligo often appears as symmetrical white patches on both sides of the body and is also known as bilateral vitiligo, the Segmental form of Vitiligo affects only one area of the body where the milky white or light pink patches of skin may occur. This is known as unilateral localized or Segmental Vitiligo. Unilateral vitiligo is less common than bilateral vitiligo. It occurs most commonly in children. More than half the patients with Segmental Vitiligo have patches of white hair.

Though the exact cause of Vitiligo is still unknown, research suggests that it may arise from autoimmune, genetic, oxidative stress, neural, or viral causes. It has affected 1-2% of world population and can start at any age in any gender or ethnic group.

Vitiligo is more likely to affect colored races. It may disappear spontaneously in some individuals while it may show a slow progression others.

Vitiligo can affect any area of body, but most commonly it appears in the skin that is usually exposed to the sun, such as face, neck and hands. It is very common in people whose skin is dark or tanned. Sometimes, it can also develop on the scalp. A Patientís hair may also turn white or grey due to lack of melanin in those areas.





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