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Skin Care and Diseases

White spots

06/21/2006

Question:

I have white splotches on my hands and neck area that I noticed after I got a bad sunburn. These spots have not gone away, even though it has been more than a year since that sunburn. How do I get rid of them?

Answer:

The presentation and history suggest that you might have vitiligo and that the sunburn served to initiate that process.  However, you could have post-inflammatory hypopigmentation.  In either case these may be retracted.  On the other hand, if you have vitiligo, intervention may help minimize the cosmetic defect.  I would urge you to see your Board-certified dermatologist at your earliest convenience since there may be other disease processes that might produce the same phenomenon.  Good luck.

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Response by:

Charles L Heaton, MD
Professor
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati