The Epidemiology of Vitiligo
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- Silverberg, N.B. Curr Derm Rep (2015) 4: 36. doi:10.1007/s13671-014-0098-6
Vitiligo is a common condition seen in a dermatology office, which has a variety of comorbidities. Worldwide, the prevalence of vitiligo ranges from 0.4 to 2.0 %, with regions of greater or lesser prevalence. Most studies demonstrate slightly greater prevalence in females and 50 % onset in childhood, but exceptions to these rules exist. Childhood vitiligo has been associated with atopic diathesis, halo nevi, and family history of vitiligo and autoimmunity. Post-pubescent vitiligo has been associated with greater acrofacial disease and thyroid disease, and early data supports reduced non-melanoma and melanoma skin cancer risk. Disease severity is inversely proportional to distance from the equator, and birthplace outside the USA may be somewhat protective against severe disease. This article reviews the epidemiology of vitiligo and the epidemiologic relationship of vitiligo to comorbid diseases and family history, with a focus on recent literature.