SAN FRANCISCO — In this video, Iltefat Hamzavi, MD, FAAD, senior staff physician at Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit, discusses research he presented on vitiligo and comorbid autoimmune diseases.
“We know that vitiligo is associated with multiple diseases, but we haven’t been able to quantify it,” Hamzavi told Healio.com/Dermatology at the American Academy of Dermatology meeting.
Hamzavi and colleagues reviewed the hospital database of approximately 1,900 patients with vitiligo and included approximately 1,000 patients who had clear visits at the Henry Ford’s vitiligo treatment facility.
They found that more than 20% of patients had some sort of comorbid autoimmune condition, with thyroid disease being most common (15% to 20% of those patients). Alopecia areata and psoriasis were other commonly reported comorbid diseases. Smaller numbers of patients had unexpected comorbidities, including Myasthenia gravis and discoid lupus, Hamzavi said.
“Vitiligo, in addition to its severe psycho-social impact on many patients, is not a disease of only the cutaneous organs but appears to be a disease in significant proportion of patients of internal organs, as well,” he said.
Hamzavi recommends that patients with vitiligo consider getting a thyroid screening every year and be screened by an appropriate physician for other autoimmune diseases.