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Dr. D. Love
Dr. D. Love, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 18446
Experience:  Family Physician for 10 years; Hospital Medical Director for 10 years.
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My husband has had vitiligo five years its spread

Customer Question

My husband has had vitiligo for almost five years its spread all over his body, our concern is exposed areas face, hands & head. He is covers it well with tinted creams.
His face is 60% faded and patches on his upper face by the eyes have turned extremely dark.
My question is there any way the dark patches can be made lighter to match rest of the skin?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Shantal-Mod replied 1 year ago.
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Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 1 year ago.
Hello from JustAnswer.
Do I understand you correctly that he has never tried any treatment for the vitiligo?
Or only that he is currently not trying any treatment for the vitiligo?
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 1 year ago.
I had not heard back from my request for clarification, but I am about to step away from the computer and wanted to address your question before leaving the computer.

It is an option to consider depigmentation of the normal skin if vitiligo gets very extensive. However, depigmentation is usually not considered unless the treatments for the vitiligo have not been effective. So, if he has never tried any treatments for the vitiligo, the depigmentation would usually not be considered yet and it would be appropriate for him to be seen for consideration of treatment for the vitiligo, such as with light therapy or a short course of steroids.

If treatment of the vitiligo has been tried and not successful and is now very widespread, then depigmentation of the normal skin would be an option, such as with a 20% cream of monobenzylether of hydroquinone.

If I can provide any clarification, please let me know.
Dr. D. Love, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 18446
Experience: Family Physician for 10 years; Hospital Medical Director for 10 years.
Dr. D. Love and 5 other Medical Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Dear *****

Thank you for your reply. My husband did have some advise from his GP he was prescribed some medication but my husband never taken it seriously. Now it is very widespread. He uses some tanning creams to camouflage most of his face to match with original dark patches by the eyes and forehead.

We would like to try the 20% cream of monobenzylether of hydroquinone.

Please advise how effective is the cream?

Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 1 year ago.
The hydroquinone will lighten the skin color in the vast majority of people in whom it is used, although the amount of lightening will vary and it may not lighten the skin to be equal to the patches of vitiligo. This is also dependent upon the baseline skin color, but even if it only partly lightens the skin and does not fully achieve the level of the vitiligo skin, the difference between the normal and vitiligo skin will be less apparent.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Is there no laser treatment for lighting the skin?

Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 1 year ago.
Laser is typically not used for depigmentation. There has been some use of laser for the vilitigo patches, but it is not practical when large segments of skin are affected.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I assume I can buy the cream at chemist as a private prescription.

Please advise how to apply.

Many thanks

Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 1 year ago.
In the US, only the weak strengths are available without a prescription. The higher strengths would require seeing a doctor, although as I noted above, the doctor will usually want to try direct treatment of the vitiligo before prescribing depigmentation.

The usual recommendation for application of the hydroquinone is twice daily.

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