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October 1943


Author Affiliations


From the Section of Dermatology, Department of Medicine, University of Chicago.

Arch Derm Syphilol. 1943;48(4):400-410. doi:10.1001/archderm.1943.01510040044008

Lesions of vitiligo differ from normal skin by the inability of their melanoblasts to form melanin pigment in response to pigmentogenic stimuli. This inability is complete in spite of the presence of melanoblasts1 and is demonstrated microscopically by a negative dopa reaction.2 The question whether depigmented skin in vitiligo differs from normal skin also in other respects is not settled. Inconsistent and often contradictory observations have been made about this problem.

Königstein3 found that there is decreased perception of touch, pain and temperature in vitiliginous spots, but others found that such hypoesthesia is not restricted to the depigmented areas and has nothing to do with the pigmentary disturbance.4 Autonomic nervous reflex impulses, such as pilomotor, vasomotor and mamillary reflexes, have been said to be modified in vitiligo.5 These observations, however, lack confirmation.

Decreased secretion of sweat in depigmented spots in vitiligo

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