Other Names for this Disease
- VKH syndrome
- Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada syndrome
- Uveomenigitic syndrome
- VKH disease
Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada disease (VKH disease) is a condition that involves chronic inflammation of melanocytes, which are specialized cells that produce a pigment called melanin. Melanin is the substance that gives skin, hair, and eyes their color. Melanin is also found in the retina, where it plays a role in normal vision. People with VKH disease usually develop vision and hearing disturbances first, followed by signs of skin problems. The most common symptoms include headaches, panuveitis, vitiligo, hair loss (alopecia), and inner ear disturbances. Neurological symptoms may also occur. The exact cause of VKH disease is not well understood, but research suggests it is an autoimmune disease. It is more common in people with darker skin pigmentation including Asian, Middle Eastern, Hispanic, and Native American populations.
Last updated: 1/8/2015
- Choczaj-Kukula A.. Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada Syndrome. Emedicine. July 15, 2009; http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/1118177-overview. Accessed 10/28/2010.
- Fang W, Yang P.. Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada. Current Eye Research. May, 2008; Accessed 10/28/2010.
- Olivier Calvetti, Caroline Laurent-Coriat, Michel Paques. VOGT-KOYANAGI-HARADA DISEASE. Orphanet. March, 2009; Accessed 1/12/2015.
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