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1. What is vitiligo?
Vitiligo, also known as leucoderma, is a condition affecting the skin due to the destruction of pigmented cells called melanocytes. Melanocytes are cells in the skin, which produce a pigment called melanin which is responsible for the colour of the skin.
2. What are the symptoms of vitiligo?
Patches of loss of skin colour are the main sign of vitiligo. The skin colour changes usually begin in the areas exposed to the sun, such as hands, feet, face and lips. Other symptoms include:
- Variations in the skin colour inside the mouth
- Changes in the skin colour of the inner layer of the eye
- Whitening of hair, eyelashes or beard and body hair
3. What causes vitiligo?
Following are the causes of vitiligo:
- Family history
- Immune system disorder in which your body's immune system attacks the melanocytes and destroys them
- Stress, sunburn or exposure to the certain chemicals may also lead to vitiligo
4. Is vitiligo curable?
No cure has been found for vitiligo. However, the patches recede on their own in some individuals. If they do not disappear on their own, the doctor prescribes medications that may be helpful to make the skin tone and skin colour even. However, no medicines and cream can help in clearing the patches completely.
5. Can homeopathy or ayurveda treat vitiligo?
Research states that homeopathy can be effective in the management of symptoms of vitiligo, especially when the treatment is initiated in the early stages. Ayurveda is also useful and involves several steps in the management of vitiligo. After purgation, several topical preparations made of herbs are used to massage the affected areas to manage the symptoms.