Vitiligo associated with other autoimmune diseases: Polyglandular autoimmune syndrome types 3B + C and 4

Department of Dermatology, University of Chieti-Pescara, Italy.
Clinical and Experimental Dermatology (Impact Factor: 1.09). 10/2006; 31(5):746-9. DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2230.2006.02171.x
Source: PubMed


Vitiligo is a common skin disease characterized by depigmented maculae resulting from a reduction of the number and function of melanocytes. Many studies suggest that vitiligo might be an autoimmune disease. Vitiligo has been frequently described in association with other autoimmune diseases. Among the diseases described in association with vitiligo are the so-called autoimmune polyglandular syndromes (APS). Vitiligo can be present in all types of APS but the most frequent association appears to be in APS-3. APS-3 was defined as the association between autoimmune thyroiditis and another autoimmune disease. Here we report one patient with thyroiditis, vitiligo and autoimmune gastritis (APS-3B+C), one patient with chronic autoimmune thyroiditis, vitiligo and alopecia (APS-3C), and one case of a young patient with type 1 diabetes mellitus and vitiligo (APS-4), according to the newest classification. We stress the importance of a thorough assessment for autoimmune diseases in selected patients with vitiligo.

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    • "Betterle and Zanchetta distinguish four subtypes (A, B, C and D) on the basis of the different organ-specific and non-organ-specific autoimmune disease associated, excluding Addison's disease and/or hypoparathyroidism. 10 The only case of APS type 3B+C was described by Amerio et al in 2006. 11 It involved a 36-year-old woman with a 20-year history of generalised vitiligo, chronic autoimmune thyroiditis and autoimmune gastritis with high titres of antiparietal cell antibodies and pernicious anaemia. "
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