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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Exp 50 years

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Undergoing PUVA therapy for vitiligo. How long will it take to get cured? Any permanent cure?

Answered by
Dr. Sudarshan


Practicing since :2005

Answered : 1391 Questions

Posted on Tue, 8 Jan 2013 in Skin Hair and Nails
Question: Sir,

I know a guy, who has vitiligo for 18 years. and he is undergoing PUVA therapy since 6 months. His vitiligo is responding to PUVA and he uses creams and tablets to control anti-agents. Will there be any harm due to this treatment? can vitiligo be controlled from spreading? how long? is there any permanent treatment?
Is vitiligo heriditary? ( his grandma has vitiligo, where as her 3 children donot have)
Answered by Dr. Sudarshan 1 hour later
Thanks for writing in.
Vitiligo is auto immune disease.Heredity plays less than 1 % role.
It can occur in absence of family history.

PUVA therapy is very effective and safe method to treat vitiligo.
He can take it for 1-2 years without any problems.
Only he has to take proper precautions while taking PUVA therapy and after the treatment.
While on treatment he has to cover his genitals to avoid exposure and possible side effects.Also eyes have to shielded during and after treatment .
His liver function test have to be carried out at baseline and every 6 months to monitor any possible side effects.

Vitiligo can be controlled from spreading and and it can be treated completely.
Phototherapy like PUVA and NBUVB can produce permanent pigmentation and lifelong results.

Hope this helps.
I will be available for any further clarification.


Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
Follow up: Dr. Sudarshan 1 hour later
can vitiligo person get married? will his children be affected? can any precautions be taken without transferring vitiligo to children?
Should food habits be controlled to keep vitiligo under check?
Answered by Dr. Sudarshan 57 minutes later
Hi again,
Vitiligo person can surely get married .There is no extra risk for the children.
However if both parents are having vitiligo then chances of vitiligo in children are increased.
At present there are no such methods or precautions to prevent transmission of vitiligo to children.Only being watchful and treating any suspicious white spots at the earliest prevents the vitiligo in children.Avoiding physical trauma ,emotional disturbunces prevents onset of vitiligo.

No particular foods are implicated in causing vitiligo.Only thing is you should avoid sour foods as acidic foods containing vitamin C inhibit melanin synthesis and can aggravate vitiligo.Avoid tamarind ,lemon and other sour foods in general.

Hope this helps.
If you are satisfied with answer please accept it and rate it at the end.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
Follow up: Dr. Sudarshan 9 hours later

One last question.
If after treatment, if there is a relapse, can he go for treatment again.
Can we do something to avoid relapse?
Can you suggest a sunscreen which he can use?
Answered by Dr. Sudarshan 51 minutes later
Hi again,
If there is relapse again some form of treatment can be started.To avoid relapse avoid the sour diet,avoid mental and physical exertion,maintain a good daily routine.He can use sunscreen of SPf 5o like suncross 50 gel.
Hope this helps.
If you are satisfied with the answer then please accept it and rate it at the end.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar

The User accepted the expert's answer

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