Treatment of vitiligo by transplantation of cultured pure melanocyte suspension: analysis of 120 cases

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Abstract

Background

Despite the availability of various medical treatments for vitiligo, a large percentage of patients fail to achieve satisfactory results. Surgical techniques offer a potential solution for patients with vitiligo who fail to respond to medical treatments.

Objective

We evaluated the practicality in treating vitiligo by using cultured autologous pure melanocytes and investigated the different results among stable localized vitiligo, stable generalized vitiligo, and active generalized vitiligo.

Methods

In all, 120 patients with vitiligo were treated with transplantation of autologous cultured pure melanocyte suspension after carbon-dioxide laser abrasion.

Results

Patients with stable localized vitiligo experienced the highest percentage of excellent repigmentation with 84% achieving 90% to 100% coverage, followed by 54% of patients with stable generalized vitiligo, whereas only 14% of patients with active generalized vitiligo experienced good repigmentation. Age and sex of the patients, and size and location of the lesions, did not show significant influence on the results of transplantation.

Conclusion

Autologous cultured pure melanocyte suspension combined with carbon-dioxide laser abrasion is an effective treatment for patients with stable vitiligo who fail to respond to medical treatments, especially for those with stable localized vitiligo.

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