Unusual Looking Animals with Vitiligo
from: Bored Panda
For those of you who don't know, vitiligo is a harmless long-term skin disorder characterized by white patches that appear on different parts of the body. This happens because the body's immune system attacks and destroys the skin cells that make color (called melanocytes).
Around one percent of the world's population (approximately 50 million people) are thought to have vitiligo, including between two to five million in the US alone, and although it's more common in humans, it can also occur in animals as well.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ People get Vitiligo too...
The cause is typically unknown. It is believed to be due to genetic susceptibility that is triggered by an environmental factor such that an autoimmune disease occurs. This results in the destruction of skin pigment cells. Risk factors include a family history of the condition or other autoimmune diseases, such as hyperthyroidism, alopecia areata, and pernicious anemia. Vitiligo is classified into two main types: segmental and non-segmental. Most cases are non-segmental meaning they affect both sides and typically get worse with time. About 10% of cases are segmental meaning they mostly involve one side of the body and do not typically worsen with time. Diagnosis can be confirmed by tissue biopsy.