Why is Vitiligo treatment unsuccessful more often than other chronic skin conditions? The immediate response of a patient would be “because no treatment works in Vitiligo!”
That reminds me of a very apt quote I always tell my patients –
“Drugs don’t work in patients who don’t take them” – C. Everest Koop.
Chronicity and indolence of Vitiligo demands adherence to treatment. I’ve reflected on what factors discourage compliance in Vitiligo treatment. Most of you who are still dealing with Vitiligo would have encountered one ore more of these barriers.
Complicated prescriptions, Orthodox beliefs, Multiple therapies, Procrastination, Lack of motivation, Indiscipline, Adverse effects, No result yet, Cost and Embarrassment.
Some of these deterrents are unique to Vitiligo treatment and should be dealt with specifically.
As far as our basic tendency towards non-compliance is concerned, I tried to analyse where the fault lies. The root word of compliance it seemed to me would have been- compulsory. Something, that needs to be done. However, the word compliance is actually derived from the word “complire/complere/cumplir” all of which mean to complete. So compliance essentially refers to completion. Well, that sounds doable. We only hear of “starting problems” whoever heard of “completing problems”?? But, in the world of health and wellness the latter is the classic culprit! Here are a few actionable ideas to improve compliance with your Vitiligo treatment and ensure successful outcome:
Challenge yourself to stick to the therapy
Optimistic outlook towards treatment outcome
Monotherapy – do not flit between several lines of treatment
Practical methods- design your treatment based on how practical it is for you
Innovate– tweak your time of application every week
Ask your doctor- what to expect, timeframe, simplification
Note the changes in patches- photograph your patches
Connect with people who have vitiligo
Engage your loved ones for support!