A few years ago, we noticed a spot on my daughter’s foot. It had lost it’s pigment except for a few skin-colored dots inside of the spot. It resembled a smiley face. We never really thought much of it, we just thought it was some sort of birthmark.
A few months back, we were at the doctor for an exam and I asked him about it because we had found one on her knuckles on her hand. He made us an appointment with a dermatologist whom we saw today. They ran a Wood’s lamp (black light) over her skin which revealed spots on her knees and wrist as well. Now looking at it, it is visible to the naked eye. She hadn’t noticed these spots either.
Vitiligo (vit-ih-LI-go) is a condition in which your skin loses melanin, the pigment that determines the color of your skin, hair and eyes. Vitiligo occurs when the cells that produce melanin die or no longer form melanin causing slowly enlarging white patches of irregular shapes to appear on your skin.
There is no cure. It is not really known what causes it. It may be an autoimmune-type disorder, but not a lot is known about it. For now we are going to try a Protopic ointment with plentiful sun exposure to try and get the pigment to come back and recheck with the dermatologist in three months.
If anyone has experience with this disease or knows anyone who does, I would love to hear from you, because frankly, as a mother, this freaks me the F@#! out.