Halo naevi with associated vitiligo-like depigmentations: pathogenetic hypothesis
Article first published online: 23 JUN 2011
© 2011 The Authors. Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology © 2011 European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology
Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology
Volume 26, Issue 6, pages 755–761, June 2012
How to Cite
van Geel, N., Speeckaert, R., Lambert, J., Mollet, I., De Keyser, S., De Schepper, S. and Brochez, L. (2012), Halo naevi with associated vitiligo-like depigmentations: pathogenetic hypothesis. Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology, 26: 755–761. doi: 10.1111/j.1468-3083.2011.04160.x
Conflict of interest None.
Funding sources None.
- Issue published online: 23 MAY 2012
- Article first published online: 23 JUN 2011
- Received: 10 February 2011; Accepted: 6 June 2011
Background In analogy with melanoma-associated leucoderma, halo naevi may trigger in some patients the development of additional depigmentations which are in distribution, extent and prognosis not in accordance with classic vitiligo.
Objective The aim of this study was to support the hypothesis that in a subset of halo naevi patients vitiligo-like lesions develop directly linked to the halo phenomenon.
Methods Forty-one patients with halo naevi were examined for the development of depigmentations not corresponding to typical vitiligo lesions.
Results We identified a subset of five halo naevi patients with additional subtle depigmentations. After the occurrence of multiple halo naevi, they developed leucoderma that showed a different disease pattern than vitiligo (variable asymmetric distribution, limited extent and lack of progression). Moreover, the characteristics of these halo naevi patients with associated leucoderma were different from classic vitiligo patients (high number of halo naevi, absence of family history for vitiligo and absence of autoimmune diseases) and the timing of occurrence of the leucoderma suggested a direct relation with the halo phenomenon.
Conclusions In this article, we describe in a limited subset of patients with multiple halo naevi discrete depigmentations at distance from halo naevi which may result from a temporary autoimmune process directly linked to the halo phenomenon. This finding illustrates the collateral damage resulting from skin immunosurveillance and may have clinical consequences as the evolution pattern in this subset of patients is less progressive compared with vitiligo. We present clinical data that support this hypothesis and suggest to call it ‘halo naevi-associated leucoderma’.