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Dr. Anantha Prasad Holla P
M.D. (Dermatology)

The journey of Dr Holla’s academics started from Mysore Medical College and continued to accomplish his higher education from the most reputed dermatology department of ,

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Patient Success Reviews

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Started on December 2006 with a 28 year old history of vitiligo over his nose, cheek, forehead, both hand fingertips, both palms, palm back.

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Home >> Treatments >> Understandig Vitiligo >> Causes of Vitiligo

What causes Vitiligo?

How do you get Vitiligo? The exact rationale behindthe destruction of Melanocytes is still elusive to the researchers in the medical field. There are some reasonable theories which are implicated in the processes of depigmentation in Vitiligo. In concise, genetic and immunological, neural or stress factors can cause Vitiligo. Causes for Vitiligo falls under either of the following:
  • By patchy loss of skin pigmentation due to immune attacks on melanocytes
  • Malfunctioning of the melanin synthesis, thus, skin colour development is arrested.
What is Melanocyte? Melanocytes are the melanin producing cells positioned in the basal layer of the skin epidermis

What are the causes of Vitiligo? Multiple factors are involved, as given below.

Genetic tendencies

Genetic factors play an important role in Vitiligo. Incomplete penetrance, multiple susceptibility loci, and genetic heterogeneity are observed in Vitiligo. The genes associated with the biosynthesis of melanin, a response to oxidative stress and regulation of auto-immunity are considered to be highly susceptible to Vitiligo.

There is no concrete rule that if one of the parents has Vitiligo, the chance of Vitiligo in the baby is high. There are plentiful cases of Vitiligo with no relevant family history of Vitiligo.Roughly, genetic susceptibility with multiple external & internal factors manifest as Vitiligo.

Auto-immune disorder

Auto-immunity is considered as one of the basic and important causes of Vitiligo. The body’s own cells are knocked down by its own immune system, leading to demolition ofmelanocytes. The most credible confirmation of an auto-immune pathogenesis is the occurrence of circulating antibodies in the blood of Vitiligo patients.Autoimmunity plays the role of killing melanocytes as an ‘effect’ to the underlying ‘cause’.

Intrinsic defect of Melanocytes

Intrinsic deformities in Melanocytes including atypical rough endoplasmic reticulum, ineffectual synthesis and processing or receptor deregulation or early apoptosis may owe to the death of Melanocytes or decreased survival rate of Melanocyte and cause Vitiligo.

Disturbance in oxidant-antioxidant systems

Free radical abundance is found to be involved in the initial pathophysiology of Melanocytes destruction. A transitional metabolite or metabolic end product of the synthesis pathway can also be the cause.

Hormonal connections

Malfunctioning of certain hormones such as Thyroid hormones or Melanocyte . Investigations put forward the under execution of the NALP1 gene in Vitiligo and Hypothyroidism.

Neural theory

The dermatomal pattern in segmental vitiligo implies that certain chemical intermediaries are released from nerve endings that affect melanin synthesis. Increased sweating and vasoconstriction in depigmented patches suggests an augmented adrenergic activity. Amplified urinary flux of homovanillic acid and vanilmandelic acid (neurometabolites) has been recognized in patients with depigmentation skin.

Trauma or stress

Vitiligo causes can also be of psychological consequences. Abrupt emotional trauma, prolonged stresses are also reported to be involved in the Vitiligo disease.

Other factors

Industrial hazards: Regular interaction with certain rubber hand gloves, continuous practice of tight clothes, and prolonged use of certain medication may initiate the disorder. But these are not reasonable in case of children for developing Vitiligo
Patient Success Reviews
Started on December 2006 with a 28 year old history of vitiligo over his nose, cheek, forehead, both hand fingertips, both palms, palm back.
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