Phototherapy for vitiligo

Phototherapy for vitiligo

UVB phototherapy for vitiligo is a widely used by vitiligo patients. UVB stimulates your skin to produce pigment. This does not happen within a week, but takes time and patience. The vitiligo spots react with small brown dots, as if someone has made dots in them with a felt tip pen. After months of treatment the many dots form a kind of colored spot.

Using a uvb lamp on the white vitiligo spots

The advantage of phototherapy with the UVB hand lamp is that you can easily do this at home. You do not have to go to the hospital 2 to 3 times a week and can even take the lamp with you when you go on vacation. Enclosed with the handheld light you receive a clear timetable for the different skin types. The duration of exposure to the UVB lamp is very short, you start with a few seconds and this increases very gradually to 15 to 20 minutes at the end of the year. Guidance from a doctor is advised.

The advantage of phototherapy for vitiligo

  • Vitiligo spots can (partially) restore pigment.
  • Vitiligo spots temporarily do not increase.
  • ‘Fresh’ places react faster.
  • You can feel more comfortable because your appearance looks better.
  • You are better protected from the sun since pigment has a protective function.

The UVB lamps are not available in the US and Canada. If you are interested in purchasing one of these lamps, please send an email to info@vitiligoshop.nl. You purchase it directly from the supplier.

Combine light therapy for vitiligo with vitiligo cream

Phototherapy can be perfectly combined with the use of Novitil® vitiligo cream. Novitil® stimulates the production of melanin, which also affects the deeper skin layers. Although it requires UV exposure for optimal repigmentation, Novitil® does not contain a light-sensitive active ingredient. That is why Novitil®, unlike psoralen, does not make the skin more sensitive to sunlight.

Frequently Asked Questions about phototherapy for vitiligo

Phototherapy is recommended by most dermatologists for the treatment of vitiligo. We have listed the most frequently asked questions about UVB phototherapy below, if you have any other questions please feel free to contact us at info@vitiligoshop.nl

Phototherapy constitutes the principal method for generalized vitiligo. A longer duration should be encouraged to enhance the response, and a period of at least 6 months is required to assess the responsiveness to phototherapy. The most effective response is anticipated on the face and neck, whereas the hands and feet show minimal response.

DermaBest® Novitil® helps to control the process of stimulating melanocytes to produce melanin. It helps the skin to regain its normal colour by naturally stimulating the pigmentation process. It should be combined with UVB or natural sunlight.

  • 75% has an at least mild response to narrowband UV-B phototherapy after 12 months of treatment
  • 36% has a marked response after 12 months of treatment

The most responsive body site was the face and neck, for which the marked repigmentation rate was 44.2%, followed by the trunk (26.1%), extremities (17.3%), and hands and feet (0%). The treatment responses on hands and feet were extremely low, and a mild response was observed in only 11.0% of patients. Meanwhile, the rates of an at least mild response were 82.0% on the face and neck, 81.7% on the trunk, and 79.0% on the extremities. Read more about this meta-analysis: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5817459/

Sun can be good for vitiligo. It can be used as a natural light therapy. You have to be careful not to burn your skin.

When using sun as a therapy, it is important to start slowly and gradually build up time. A pink color (not red) in the vitiligo areas a few hours after sun exposure is the desired effect. As the skin becomes accustomed to the sun, it can take longer to achieve pinkness. Like any other treatment, sunlight would need to be used at a therapeutic level consistently for it to be beneficial. Moderation must be used, however, as burning the skin can damage it and possibly cause the vitiligo to spread.

Red light therapy might be beneficial, however not much scientific research is done.

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