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Indian J Dermatol Venereol Leprol. 2011 Sep-Oct;77(5):571-6. doi: 10.4103/0378-6323.84059.

Late onset vitiligo and audiological abnormalities: is there any association?

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Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, Kuwait University, and Department of Dermatology, Farwaniya Hospital, Farwaniya, Kuwait.



There is scarce published data on late onset vitiligo. All the studies showing association of audiological abnormalities have been done on younger age group of patients.


To study the clinical characteristics of the patients with late onset vitiligo. Also, to investigate the audiological abnormalities seen in these patients and compare them with age and sex matched healthy volunteers.


One hundred and ninety-seven consecutive patients developing vitiligo after the age of 40 were studied. These patients were examined for the audiological abnormalities, and compared with those seen in age and sex matched healthy volunteers.


Vitiligo started between 40 and 50 years of age in 68.02% of our patients. Vitiligo vulgaris was the commonest clinical pattern, and most patients reported onset of their vitiligo on the upper extremities. Fifty four had diabetes mellitus, 19 patients had autoimmune thyroid diseases, and 32 showed hypoacusis on audiometric examination. Eighteen controls (age and sex matched healthy volunteers) also showed hypoacusis. The difference in frequency was not significant (22.37% vs 18%, χ2-test, P>0.05). The sensorineural type of audiologic impairment was more commonly seen both in patients as well as in controls.


Late onset vitiligo was not found to have statistically significant association with audiological abnormalities in this study.

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