28 Interesting Facts About Vitiligo

28 Interesting Facts About Vitiligo
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Vitiligo is a condition that is believed to be primarily autoimmune in nature and is characterized by loss of pigment cells.

It can develop on any part of the body, including the eyes, the mucous membranes (moist lining of the nose, mouth, rectal, and genital areas), and inner ears, however, it usually starts on the forearms, hands, feet, and face.

The more dark-skinned an individual is, the more their vitiligo stands out, due to the contrast between unaffected and affected areas of skin.

List Of 28 Interesting Facts About Vitiligo:


#1 Worldwide, the prevalence of vitiligo ranges from 0.06 to 2.28 percent. In India, the incidence of vitiligo is found to be 0.25 to 2.5 percent.

#2 An estimated 30 percent of vitiligo suferrers report some spontaneous repigmentation, especially in sun-exposed areas; nevertheless, this is almost never enough to be satisfactory to the sufferer.

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#3 The skin condition is neither contagious nor life-threatening.

#4 When you have vitiligo, the cells which are responsible for the skin color (called melanocytes) are destroyed. Hence, melanocytes no longer produce melanin (skin pigment).

#5 The cause of the condition is not yet completely understood; however, many doctors think that it is a disease in which the human body makes antibodies to its own melanocytes.

Risk Factors

#6 Approximately 20 percent of people with vitiligo have at least one close relative who is also affected. But, only 5 to 7 percent of children will get the skin condition even if a parent has it.


#7 It causes patches of white skin, which are often symmetrical, with red or dark borders. Areas of lost pigment can develop anywhere on the body, including:

  • within the hearing system of the ear;
  • sun-exposed areas such as the feet, hands, face, and arms;
  • back of the eye;
  • inside the mouth or other mucous membranes;
  • genitals;
  • nostrils.

#8 Generally, signs and symptoms will appear by the age of 20. However, it is possible that the symptoms will occur later in life.

#9 This condition is progressive in nature; nevertheless, many years may pass without new patches appearing.


#10 Two forms of the skin condition are well recognized:

Non-Segmental Vitiligo

#11 It is often linked with other autoimmune diseases, especially with:

  • alopecia areata (round patches of hair loss);
  • Addison’s disease (adrenal gland disease);
  • autoimmune thyroid diseases, including Graves’ disease (also referred to as toxic diffuse goiter) and Hashimoto’s thyroiditis (the most common cause of hypothyroidism in the US);
  • systemic lupus erythematosus;
  • rheumatoid arthritis;
  • pernicious anemia (a type of vitamin B12 deficiency);
  • psoriasis;
  • type 1 diabetes (when the immune system destroys the cells in the pancreas).

#12 This type of vitiligo is actually a depigmented disorder showing progressive, acquired, and depigmented lesions of the mucosa, skin, and hair. It does not have a specific area of occurrence.

Segmental Vitiligo

#13 It is characterized by macules in a flag-like or linear pattern of mosaicism with a quasi-dermatomal or dermatomal distribution. This type of vitiligo typically progresses for approximately a year, then stops. It is not linked to thyroid or other autoimmune disorders.


#14 Even though most sufferers with this condition are in good general health, they have a higher risk of having autoimmune diseases, like:

  • alopecia areata;
  • type 1 diabetes;
  • psoriasis;
  • rheumatoid arthritis;
  • systemic lupus erythematosus;
  • Addison disease;
  • pernicious anemia;
  • thyroid disease.

#15 The skin condition can also affect people’s psychological and emotional well-being, with numerous affected individuals reporting feelings of embarrassment, anxiety, depression, and shame.


#16 Diagnostic tests which are performed for the condition may include:

  • examination under ultraviolet light;
  • skin biopsy – during this test, a piece of the affected skin is taken and examined under the microscope by a healthcare professional.


#17 Sometimes, the condition goes away by itself, and some medical treatments may slow its progress; however, a complete cure cannot be guaranteed.

#18 Treatments may include:

  • depigmentation of the remaining skin;
  • corticosteroid creams;
  • ultraviolet A light therapy;
  • light-sensitive drugs;
  • covering smaller patches with long-lasting dyes.

Home Remedies

#19 Popular topical home remedies include:

  • a paste of mustard oil and turmeric;
  • Ginkgo Biloba paste;
  • a paste that consists of sweet basil extract and lemon.

Famous People

Michael Jackson

#20 He has won the Legend and the Lifetime Achievement Awards, 26 American Music Awards, and 15 Grammy awards. In the year 2009, Jackson left this world at the age of 51. Michael is arguably the most famous person of all time with vitiligo.

Tamar Braxton

#21 Tamar Braxton is a reality TV star, singer-songwriter, and actress. She is an advocate for the acceptance of vitiligo, particularly after being accused of skin bleaching.

Joe Rogan

Bryan Danielson

#23 He is an American professional wrestler and author currently signed to World Wrestling Entertainment.

Winnie Harlow

#24 Winnie Harlow was diagnosed with vitiligo at age four. She is a model of Jamaican descent who was one of the cast members of the television show America’s Next Top Model.

Jon Hamm

#25 He is an American director, actor, and television producer who is best known for playing in Mad Men. His vitiligo only affects his hands and it was triggered by stress.

Lee Thomas

#26 He is an author and an Emmy award-winning entertainment reporter for WJBK Fox 2 News. Lee sufferers from vitiligo and also wrote a short story regarding his experience with the disease.

Holly Marie Combs

#27 She is an American television producer and actress, who is best known for her performances in ”Charmed”, ”Picket Fences”, and ”Pretty Little Liars.” She has vitiligo on both of her hands.


#28 Sisqo is an American R&B singer who is best known for his single “The Thong Song.” He has stress-induced eczema and vitiligo.

Sources http://www.ucdenver.edu/academics/colleges/medicalschool/ https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1027811714000561