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Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology
Volume 74, n° 2
pages 295-302 (février 2016)
Doi : 10.1016/j.jaad.2015.08.063
accepted : 23 August 2015
Original Articles

Comorbid autoimmune diseases in patients with vitiligo: A cross-sectional study

Liza Gill, BS a, Allison Zarbo, BA b, Prescilia Isedeh, MD c, Gordon Jacobsen, MS d, Henry W. Lim, MD c, Iltefat Hamzavi, MD c,
a College of Human Medicine, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan 
b Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, Michigan 
c Vitiligo Research and Treatment Center, Department of Dermatology, Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit, Michigan 
d Department of Public Health Sciences, Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit, Michigan 

Reprint requests: Iltefat Hamzavi, MD, Department of Dermatology, Henry Ford Hospital, 3031 W Grand Blvd, Suite 800, Detroit, MI 48202.

Few large-scale studies have quantified the burden of comorbid autoimmune diseases in patients with vitiligo.


We sought to determine the prevalence of comorbid autoimmune diseases in patients with vitiligo.


We conducted a manual chart review on a cohort of 1873 patients with vitiligo seen between January 2002 and October 2012 at the Henry Ford Health System in Detroit, MI. Patients were excluded if they had fewer than 2 dermatology notes (N = 595) or if they were never given a diagnosis of vitiligo by a dermatologist (N = 180).


Of 1098 patients with vitiligo, nearly 20% had at least 1 comorbid autoimmune disease. Compared with the general US population, we found a higher prevalence of thyroid disease (12.9%, P  < .001), alopecia areata (3.8%, P  < .001), inflammatory bowel disease (0.9%, P  = .046), pernicious anemia (0.5%, P  = .007), systemic lupus erythematosus (0.3%, P  = .048), Guillain-Barre syndrome (0.3%, P  < .001), discoid lupus (0.2%, P  = .003), linear morphea (0.2%, P  < .001), myasthenia gravis (0.2%, P  = .002), and Sjögren syndrome (0.2%, P  = .011).


The study lacked a control group. This was a single-institution study with possible selection bias, and thus the findings may not be representative of the overall population of patients with vitiligo.


We observed a high prevalence of comorbid autoimmune diseases in patients with vitiligo and report several new associations.

The full text of this article is available in PDF format.

Key words : alopecia areata, associations, autoimmune disease, comorbidities, prevalence, thyroid disease, vitiligo

Abbreviations used : BSA, IBD, SLE, TPO, TSH, T1DM

 Funding sources: None.
 Conflicts of interest: None declared.

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