Just like any other year, June was the month of vitiligo awareness for millions of vitiligans living worldwide, skin inclusivity activists, and research foundations working on skin disorders. We all know that World Vitiligo Day (WVD) has been celebrated on June 25th with great enthusiasm and zeal since 2011. However, due to the unexpected outbreak of COVID 19, WVD was commemorated differently this year. WVD conferences across Europe and North America were canceled. So, vitiligans from across the world had no option, but to raise awareness around the widely misunderstood skin disorder, using virtual technologies and social media.
World Vitiligo Day 2020’s international headquarters moved from Vietnam to Serbia. Sadly, the tenth annual WVD celebrations could not go as planned as the VRF Board and WVD 2020 President made the difficult decision to covert this year’s awareness conference into an online-only, virtual event.
In many parts of the USA and Europe, many virtual vitiligo awareness talks were conducted by a number of support groups and nonprofit organizations such as the Litty Ligo Vitiligo Outreach and Advocacy Network and VRF Foundation. In India, where 1% of the country’s 1312.2 million people live with vitiligo, many virtual VWD events were held by SupportVitiligo and AARUS Foundation.
The same month, June 2020, some interesting numbers came up. According to a Fortune Business Insights’ report – Vitiligo Treatment: Global Market Analysis, Insights and Forecast, 2019-2026 – the global vitiligo treatment market is projected to reach US$ 1,944.5 Mn by 2026 at a CAGR of 5.8%. The global vitiligo treatment market, which is grouped into topical treatment, surgical procedures, and light therapy, is geographically divided into North America, Latin America, the Middle East, Africa, Europe, and the Asia Pacific. Amongst these, in the Asia Pacific, India and China have been witnessing huge patient pools of vitiligo in recent years. The global vitiligo treatment market is likely to gain impetus from an ever-rising demand from these pockets for treatment options for the skin condition.
On the vitiligo research front, the month didn’t see many substantial studies. However, a case-control study conducted in southern Iran had some interesting findings. This analytic study was conducted in Faghihi Hospital outpatient dermatology clinic, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, southern Iran from June to September 2019, but results of the same were analyzed and then published this month – June 2020.
The team of researchers here studied the relationship of hypertension with vitiligo concerning its activity, age of onset, duration, and affected body surface area. In the case-control study, 166 individuals with segmental and nonsegmental vitiligo (between 20 and 50 years of age)were enrolled. According to study results, it was found that vitiligo patients were more susceptible to hypertension while no association could be found between characteristics of skin disorder and a rise in blood pressure.