By Gary M. White, MD
Post-inflammatory hypopigmentation in a child with atopic dermatitis.
Post-inflammatory hypopigmentation is the development of ill-defined whitish spots in areas of previous inflammation. The distribution of melanin from melanocytes to keratinocytes is disrupted by inflammation of the skin and whitish spots are the result. Pityriasis alba is a specific variant occurring on the cheeks in prepubertal children.
Ill-defined, hypo, but not depigmented areas develop in the same areas as a previous rash. Atopic dermatitis, seborrheic dermatitis and eczema are common triggers.
The skin will return to normal pigmentation as long as the causative rash does not return.
PIHO after psoriasis and atopic dermatitis.
These white spots were left after several tags were frozen in a darker-skinned patient.
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