A narrowband UVB lamp emits light in a therapeutic range.
Narrowband UVB lights (NB-UVB) comprise a subset of the UVB spectrum which is centred at roughly 311 nm. This is less than 1% of the total range of wavelengths from sunlight.
Studies have shown that narrow band UVB light treatment uses the optimal part of the UVB light spectrum which helps in re-pigmentation of the natural skin colour.
Exposure time of narrowband UVB lamp is longer than traditional broadband UVB thereby yielding more effective and safe results.
There are no risks and side effects of narrowband UVB light therapy as compared to the other treatment modalities e.g. systemic drugs.
Narrowband UVB light therapy is very useful in the treatment of vitiligo and replacing traditional PUVA phototherapy treatment.
With the help of UVB, the progression of disease can be stopped and sufficient pigmentation from live melanocytes is achieved but still some lesions fail to form colour even after prolonged phototherapy. In these conditions skin grafting is done. In this procedure, the skin from normal and hidden part of the body (Donor area) is taken and grafted over the vitiligo patch (Recipient area). It can be performed in many ways by the Skin surgeons.
The three main types are:
Melanocyte transplantation is the latest surgical method for the treatment of stable vitiligo / leukoderma and loss of pigmentation. This treatment involves transferring of patients own melanocytes from an area of healthy skin (with pigment) to the vitiligo patch which has no melanocytes.
This treatment has become a treatment of choice these days as it provides perfect pigmentation without leaving any scars. It is a highly specialized technique in which even the sensitive areas like eyelids, lips, fingers and joints can be treated without any scars with remarkable cosmetic results. Re-pigmentation is achieved within 1-3 months.
Punch Grafting is the treatment of choice in those vitiligo cases where lesions are located on legs, hands or involves bigger areas. This surgery is economical and very easy to perform. In this technique we take out very small punches of normal skin and place it over vitiligo skin by creating the small craters. After few days, these small skin grafts become fixed in vitiligo skin and these new skin grafts start producing pigment. It has a high success rate of 80 to 90 percent in most of the patients.
This technique is suitable for smaller vitiligo areas and the areas where very good cosmetic results are required egg. lips. In this type of grafting, few blisters are formed on normal skin with the help of suction pressure over the period of 2-3 hours, mainly from thighs. After this the roof of the formed blisters is removed and placed over abraded recipient vitiligo skin. Within few days this skin transfers melanocytes to the vitiligo skin and sheds off. After 2-3 months, the transferred melanocytes would re-pigment the vitiligo area.
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