West Houston Dermatology

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XTRAC Laser for Vitiligo


Anyone with vitiligo knows how irritating it can be trying to hide the depigmented areas of skin affected by the disease.  There is still no cure for Vitiligo, but there are effective treatments.  In years past PUVA was the most common treatment for vitiligo.  PUVA treatment consists of taking psoralen and using UVA light therapy.  Psoralen is a compound that sensitizes the skin to UV radiation.  Because many patients experienced nausea or intense itching after taking the psoralen, PUVA has been replaced by other options for treating vitiligo.  One of these options for treating vitiligo is XTRAC laser therapy.  This treatment does not cause pain, although some patients feel a warm sensation during treatment and others may experience a modest sunburn reaction following treatment.  It’s important to understand that exposure to this wavelength does not cause skin cancer.  Your dermatologist will carefully monitor the patient to make sure s/he has the correct dose settings.  In order to avoid treatment “burn out” and/or disappointment, it’s important to understand that vitiligo treatment takes time to see repigmentation results, and it could require several months.   For example, it may take 10+ treatments with the XTRAC laser in responsive patients before the s/he begins to see improvement in skin pigmentation, and possibly many more treatments for full repigmentation of the skin. West Houston Dermatology Laser and Skin Care Center offers XTRAC laser treatments by Houston vitiligo specialist Dr. Stephen Mahoney.