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Am I At Greater Risk For Skin Cancer Because Of My Vitiligo?

There is some disagreement in the medical community, many vitiligo experts believe there is not an increased risk for skin cancer in vitiligo patients. According to Pearl Grimes, MD, a leading medical expert on vitiligo, "the current data show no increase in skin cancer in vitiligo patients, both within the vitiligo patches, or the normal skin...either way."

Some experts in the medical profession field believe that there is no increased risk in the case of melanomas, but that there may be a slightly elevated risk for some types of carcinomas. The medical community is still investigating about it.

In addition, is PUVA or UVB associated with an increase in skin cancer in areas of vitiligo? Dr. Grimes says no. In psoriasis literature and articles, we do see an increase in skin cancer for those treating with UV light. But this is NOT the case for vitiligo patients. In the case of Narrow Band UVB itself, many suggest that UVB is less carcinogenic. More research and data are required, since UVB and narrow band UVB are so new. But many doctors and researchers feel that Narrow Band UVB is safer than other light options.

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