Procedure Restores Pigmentation for Patients With Vitiligo

Melanocyte-keratinocyte transplantation procedure effectively improves skin pigmentation

WEDNESDAY, June 6 (HealthDay News) -- The melanocyte-keratinocyte transplantation procedure (MKTP) is well tolerated and is effective for restoring skin pigmentation for some patients with vitiligo, according to a study published in the May issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology.

Richard H. Huggins, M.D., of the Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, and colleagues conducted a prospective, uncontrolled, open-label study involving 28 patients aged 18 years or older with a self-reported history of vitiligo and no new or expanding lesions for at least six months before surgery. The participants underwent a total of 36 MKTP procedures. Repigmentation was assessed during a three- to six-month follow-up period.

The researchers found that the three- and six-month follow-up was completed by 23 patients who underwent 29 procedures. Of these, repigmentation was excellent in 17 percent, good in 31 percent, fair in 10 percent, and poor in 41 percent. Average improvement was −45 percent in the Vitiligo Area Scoring Index, which is indicative of improved pigmentation.

"The results achieved in our study were of obvious significance to our patients," a coauthor said in a statement. "We believe this new treatment option offers hope to patients of color and those with vitiligo on one side of the body or in one area of the body."

Several of the authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

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