Skin Pigmenation Disorders: Albinism

Albinism is a genetic deficiency of melanin pigment production. Production is rarely totally absent but perhaps 1-10% of that of normal melanin pigment production. People with albinism have little or no pigment in their eyes, skin, or hair.  Albinism is the result of inheriting altered genes that do not produce the normal amount of melanin pigments.


Girl with albinism Albinism affects people from all races, most children with albinism are born to parents who have normal hair and eye colour for their ethnic backgrounds. There are a variety of types of albinism. Albinism comes with a whole range of vision and skin problems.


An eye of someone who suffers from albinism. It is estimated that one in 17,000 people in the UK have some sort of albinism. 


Skin Pigmentation Disorders: Tinea Versicolour

Tinea Versicolour is a disorder that also affects skin pigmentation due to yeast found naturally on the skin surface. This yeast is a fungus known as Pityrosporum ovale, non-harmful and found naturally on the surface of your skin. When in the rare case this yeast/fungus begins to grow uncontrollably the pigmentation of the skin is affected. When the yeast affects the pigmentation of the skin it causes the melanin to change and therefore darkens of lightens the skin pigmentation. This shows on your skin in darker or lighter patches.


The growth of Pityrosporum ovale (fungus affecting pigmentation) may be affected by:

  • Oily skin
  • Hot humid weather
  • Hormonal changes
  • Weaken immune systems
  • excessive sweating

Tinea versicolor can occur in people from all ethnic backgrounds. However, the condition is more common in adolescents and young adults. Adults are more likely to develop tinea versicolor if they visit an area with a subtropical climate.

Skin Pigmentation Disorders: Vitiligo

Vitiligo is when you lose pigments in your skin which therefore causes your skin colour to change. Most people with Vitiligo lose the pigment in normal pigmented skin in patches. This lose of pigmentation can occur in patched that range form small to areas covering over 50% of the body.

vitiligo-1 Photo-Woman-with-Vitiligo

These patches are usually areas of your body that are exposed to the sun, such as your hands, face, arms, and feet, but the genitalia can also be affected. Researchers think that vitiligo could be an autoimmune response, meaning that the body attacks itself. In this case, your body destroys its own melanocytes so that the pigment is lost.