Question

Skin Discoloration

What could cause white spots all over my body?

A Answers (1)

  • AJeffrey Benabio, MD, Dermatology, answered

    There are many causes for white spots. Here are 3 common ones:

    • Vitiligo is a common skin disease that results in loss of pigment (color) because the immune system is attacking the pigment cells. It can occur all over. Medications such as topical steroids can help the color come back.
    • Tinea versicolor is a common yeast infection of the skin. It occurs mostly in summer and mostly on the chest and back. Dandruff shampoo, which also treats yeast, can be an easy, effective treatment. Often the treatment has to be repeated weekly to keep the yeast away.
    • Some people develop white spots on their arms and legs as the result of sun damage. Years of excess sun exposure can lead to dime-sized spots where the pigment is lighter than surrounding areas. Sun protection is essential to prevent worsening, but there is no way to make the color come back. 
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