Leucoderma, sometimes known as vitiligo, is a rare skin disease characterized by white spots and patches. The white patch or spot is called leucoderma, and when it occurs without any preceding disease it is called Vitiligo. Leucoderma is a symptom of vitiligo. Leucoderma in literal term means white skin. This occurs due to loss of melanin, a dark pigment which gives color to skin. It may begin with a small patch but slowly and steadily spreads throughout the body. Some dermatological outpatient records show the incidence of Leucoderma to be 3% to 4% in India although an incidence as high as 8.8% has also been reported. It affects people of all ages, ethnic groups and skin types.
Signs & Symptoms- Leucoderma is not a painful, dangerous or contagious skin disease. The various symptoms observed during Leucoderma are small, white patch on the skin which may expand with time, premature greying of hair, loss of hair, hair on the patches become white, increased sensitivity towards cold. This disorder has no significant physical consequences, however the social and psychological stigma associated with it makes it one of the most life-altering diseases.
In Allopathy, different drugs like methoxsalen, trioxsalen and psoralen are available for the treatment of Leucoderma in oral capsule form or topical cream or lotion form. Psoralen with light therapy is also given which is also known as PUVA therapy. Treatment of Leucoderma always poses a problem as the patient compliance is less. Most of the times the treatment gets discontinued by the patients as the effect are very slow. This inefficiency leads to frustration in patients.
Leucoderma can be correlated to Shivtra described in Ayurveda. In shvitra, mainly twak (skin) and subsequent Dhatus- Rakta, Mansa and meda along with Tridosha are involved in generation of white or pale yellow colored spots. According to Ayurveda, Shvitra is classified as RaktajaVikara. In Shivtra disease mainly Bhrajaka Pitta gets vitiated, which is responsible for normal skin color.
Ayurvedic Treatment of Leucoderma:
According to Ayurveda, repeated application of Shodhana Karma such as Vamana (Emesis)Virechana (Purgation) and Raktamokshan (Bloodletting) along with Shamana therapy is beneficial in Shvitra. Various single herbs like Bakuchi, Kakodumbara, Khadira, Manjishtha and medicinal formulations like Arogyavardhini, Kaishor Guggulu, Mahamanjishtadi Kwath, Khadirarishta etc are useful in the management of Shivtra.
Dr. Kohli has treated hundreds of patients of leucoderma with customized Ayurvedic treatment. Customized Ayurvedic treatment helps to break the pathogenesis of the disease and initiate re-pigmentation process. This is one disease which does find relief primarily in Ayurveda.