Vitiligo: A Review

Dermatology. 2020;236(6):571-592. doi: 10.1159/000506103. Epub 2020 Mar 10.


Vitiligo, a common depigmenting skin disorder, has an estimated prevalence of 0.5-2% of the population worldwide. The disease is characterized by the selective loss of melanocytes which results in typical nonscaly, chalky-white macules. In recent years, considerable progress has been made in our understanding of the pathogenesis of vitiligo which is now clearly classified as an autoimmune disease. Vitiligo is often dismissed as a cosmetic problem, although its effects can be psychologically devastating, often with a considerable burden on daily life. In 2011, an international consensus classified segmental vitiligo separately from all other forms of vitiligo, and the term vitiligo was defined to designate all forms of nonsegmental vitiligo. This review summarizes the current knowledge on vitiligo and attempts to give an overview of the future in vitiligo treatment.

Keywords: Epidemiology; Management; Pathogenesis; Vitiligo, non-segmental; Vitiligo, segmental.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Oxidative Stress
  • Quality of Life
  • Vitiligo* / diagnosis
  • Vitiligo* / epidemiology
  • Vitiligo* / etiology
  • Vitiligo* / therapy