Dermatosurgical techniques for repigmentation of vitiligo

Int J Dermatol. 2006 Apr;45(4):411-7. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-4632.2006.02486.x.


There are a number of dermatosurgery techniques available to achieve repigmentation of vitiligo, such as suction blister grafting, split-thickness skin grafting, punch grafting, follicular grafting, cultured-melanocytes transplantation, and noncultured-melanocytes transplantation. Each method has advantages and disadvantages. As there are no specific data available from the prospective studies in this field it is uneasy to recommend which surgical approach to vitiligo offers the best result. According to a systematic review by Njoo et al.,(17) suction blister and split-thickness skin grafting have the highest rates of success (87%), while the average success rates for other methods varied from 13% to 53%. Punch grafting has the highest rate of adverse effects, including cobblestoning appearance (27%) and scar formation (40%) in the donor site. Accordingly, it is also mandatory to appropriately select vitiligo patients in order to achieve a complete and permanent repigmentation.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Biopsy, Needle
  • Hair Follicle / transplantation
  • Humans
  • Melanocytes / transplantation
  • Patient Selection
  • Skin Pigmentation
  • Skin Transplantation / methods
  • Vitiligo / surgery*