An indicative cell transplantation operation for a patient with vitiligo was performed by Almaty doctors


June 27, 2023

A demonstration operation of transplantation of uncultivated epidermal cells took place in the Almaty clinic "Center for Vitiligo and Skin Health" as part of the month of awareness about vitiligo.

Such an operation, based on the transplantation of the patient's own healthy skin, is considered one of the most effective in the treatment of vitiligo patients today. With its help, it is possible to achieve repigmentation (closure of the focus of vitiligo) from 85% to 100%, except for the hands and feet, where the results are much lower due to the peculiarities of the structure of the skin.

For the first time, the operation of transplantation of uncultivated epidermal cells was carried out in Kazakhstan in Shymkent eight years ago with the participation of Doctor of Medical Sciences, Professor Davinder Parsad from India through the mediation of the World Vitiligo Foundation. In 2015, a group of Kazakhstani doctors were trained in India. Since then, the "Indian method" has been adopted in the country not only, but also individual stages of transplantation have been improved, which contribute to better survival of skin cells during transplantation. From the CIS countries, such an operation is performed only by doctors from Almaty and Tashkent.

Surgical methods of treating the disease, according to Kazakhstani doctors, are effective in the segmental form of vitiligo (when white spots are located on one side of the body). In this case, the results of treatment remain forever. Remission in the segmental form is seven years, which corresponds to international standards. The operation is also suitable for patients whose results after treatment with phototherapy have not led to effective changes. One of the important requirements for the operation is the absence of exacerbation for one year.

Today, domestic doctors have already carried out 133 transplants. The breakthrough result was repigmentation up to 100% on the face. In recent years, for the first time, it has been possible to achieve 35-40% closure of the lesion on the hands using a surgical method. Now doctors continue to work on improving these results.

World practice indicates an average duration of remission after treatment of vitiligo for an average of four years. A clinical case of remission after complex treatment was registered for the first time in Kazakhstan – 14 years.

The patient, to whom doctors performed a demonstration operation with the participation of foreign experts, is 25 years old. White spots appeared more than a year ago on the forehead and chin. Doctors diagnosed bisegmental vitiligo. During the year, with the help of phototherapy, it was possible to stop the progression and repigmentation by only 15%. The low result is due to the fact that this type of disease is poorly treated by phototherapy, but stops vitiligo. Segmental vitiligo is the main indication for surgical treatment. Doctors are convinced that after a year of no growth of white spots, an operation to transplant uncultivated epidermal cells, which lasted an hour and a half, will allow for maximum closure of the focus.

The demonstration operation was performed by experienced doctors A.A. Kasymkhanova – dermato-cosmetologist, Candidate of medical Sciences, president of the World Vitiligo Day-2023 and A.K. Abdrakhmanova - dermatologist.

The Ministry of Health of the Republic of Kazakhstan has declared June vitiligo Awareness Month. During June, the Kazakh Scientific Center of Dermatology and Infectious Diseases and the Center for Vitiligo and Skin Health in Almaty hold various events. For the first time, the Kazakh city of Almaty has been chosen as the international headquarters of the 13th World Vitiligo Day.

Vitiligo causes lightening of the skin with spots on the face and body. This is an unpredictable, chronic, non-infectious, autoimmune skin disease, which affects every hundredth person to varying degrees. Vitiligo is not fatal and does not cause any organic harm, but sometimes has a devastating effect on the social life of a sick person and his family. The disease can affect anyone at any age, but usually this condition develops before the age of twenty, which means that many children live with vitiligo.

More than 15 thousand patients have applied to Kazakhstan dermatological institutions with vitiligo problems in a year. This indicator is probably more than 2-3 times higher, since many doctors and patients are not informed about possible methods of treating vitiligo. Many people, due to shyness, public condemnation and stigma, prefer to hide the disease and do not go to doctor's appointments, which is a serious obstacle to treatment.

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