Sean Klepper M.D.
Stephen Lyle, M.D., ...
- Disease of unknown etiology (possibly autoimmune) characterized by slowly progressive patchy depigmentation of the skin secondary to loss of melanocytes
- Most commonly begins on sun-exposed skin in a symmetrical distribution
- There is a family history of the disease in many cases.
- Associated with a plethora of other diseases, especially autoimmune diseases
- Complete absence of melanocytes and epidermal melanin
- Biopsies from the periphery of lesions may show chronic inflammation in the papillary dermis.
- Absence of melanocytes may be confirmed by MART-1 immunohistochemistry (S-100 also stains Langerhans cells, potentially yielding a false negative).
- Absence of melanin may be confirmed by a Fontana-Masson stain.