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Study: Vitiligo and Major Depression Disorder Linked

J Am Acad Dermatol; ePub 2018 Dec 5; Vallerand, et al

Results of a recent study highlight the burden of depression in patients with vitiligo and support the possible existence of pathophysiological connections between these 2 conditions. Incident major depressive disorder (MDD) and referent cohorts were followed until the development of vitiligo. Additionally, incident vitiligo and referent cohorts were followed until the development of MDD. Cox proportional-hazards models were used, adjusting for numerous covariates. Researchers found:

  • In adjusted models, MDD patients (n=405,397) were at a 64% increased risk of vitiligo (HR=1.64) compared to the referent cohort (n=5,739,048).
  • This risk was decreased in patients using antidepressants.
  • Compared to the referent cohort (n=6,137,696), patients with vitiligo (n= 7,104) that were aged <30 years at diagnosis had a higher risk of developing MDD than patients aged >30 years (HR=1.31 vs HR=1.22).


Vallerand IA, Lewinson RT, Parsons LM, et al. Vitiligo and major depressive disorder: A bidirectional population-based cohort study. [Published online ahead of print December 5, 2018]. J Am Acad Dermatol. doi:10.1016/j.jaad.2018.11.047.