Michael Jackson has vitiligo?

My first question is:

Why is it so hard for people not to beleive that african-american singer Michael Jackson suffers from a skin depigmentation condition known as vitiligo?

Sorry, what I meant to so say was:

Why is it so hard for people to beleive that african-american singer Michael Jackson suffers from a skin depigmentation condition known as vitiligo?

While the pigmentation could be a disease, I don’t know of the illness that causes your nose to decrease width until the bone structure collapses.

Simply, with all of the obvious platic surgerying he has had done to himself–which he denies–there is no reason to believe that his pigmentation isn’t more of the same.

I think it’s a combination of three things:

  • His symptoms would be atypical for vitiligo, which normally only causes pale-coloured irregular blotches.
  • He’s rather well known for having undergone other cosmetic alterations
  • He’s a freak - everybody loves to despise/distrust a freak.

Essentially Mangetout 's first point.
IANAD but i know the main characteristic of vitiligo is patches or spots. There’s a guy of African origin in our neighbourhood and he has distinct pale patches on his face and hands where there is a lack of pigmentation. Micheal Jackson’s skin seems to have turned a uniform coffe cream colour which dosn’t fit with the idea of Vitiligo.

Here are some pictures. And a useful page with descriptions of the symptoms so you can compare them with MJ’s appearance for yourself.

I don’t have a problem with believing he has vitiligo.

I think that the massive adjustments he’s made to his face to eliminate all signs of blackness- thinning his lips, removing his nose- indicate a creepy-ass racism that gives me the shudders. Do most people with vitiligo respond with such dramatic skin bleaching?

Plus, he’s crazy as a treeful of squirrels, and I’m pretty sure he hurts boys because he’s so crazy he thinks he’s helping them. If he were standing here right now, I’d ask him to leave before I called the cops.

One thing I’ve always wondered:

Is it even possible to “bleach” one’s skin, as it were? Is there any medical procedure that can lighten the pigmentation of the skin? That’s the main reason I think it’s the disease, or some varient thereof.

This is from a student run newspaper:

This one is a more scientific look, and seems to come from the National Poison Center of Malaysia.

Try Googling “hydroquinone” and you will find lots of places selling creams that they claim will lighten the skin.

The kid Justin in you first link looks pretty homogenous in his colouring.

Basically correct. However, one form of “treatment” in cases where a large percentage of the skin is involved is to medicaly depigment the remainder for a more uniform appearance.

And before anyone thinks I am defending Jackson in any way, I think the MFer is a child molesting psycho who belongs either in a prison or a hospital.

Cite: as one of the 1 to 2 percent of people with vitiligo, I have researched the disease a bit. Here is a recent thread with links that may help:

I remember reading somewhere that Jackson was upset about the patchiness of his skin and used a ‘procedure’ to kill all of his melanin cells and have a unified look.

Originally posted by** Adam Yax**

So does Gabby until you look at her hairline and neck, I’m guessing the parts of his body with ‘spots’ just aren’t visible - we can’t see his hands for example, he also says

I have no problem with the idea that he’s got vitiligo.

I have a huge problem with his claim that he hasn’t had any work done. What, is your face imploding???

To be fair, most of the changes he had made, up to a couple years ago, just made him look a lot more like his sister, Janet, but that’s just creepy.

But does vit. change over time? I don’t recall MJ had signs of it as a kid, unless it was makeup- or clothing- covered. His color seems to have certainly changed beyond what I thought vit. did, but I don’t know much about it.

Sorry vetbridge, didn’t mean to ingnore your post. Thanks for the link - and hope things are going as ok as can be expected, if not better.

Also, if he really had vitiligo, wouldn’t it just be easier to fill in the light spots darker?

As of now, no way to stimulate melanin production and darken skin patches is available. Suppression of melanin production all over is the only way to achieve an unblotched skin.

Makeup, of course, is usually intended to darken the light spots and blend them in. If the patches on face or neck are small, this could be a good alternative.

I believe he probably does have vitiligo, and being a performer wishes to take no chances of looking piebald to any passing camera. Logical. It just seems so … convenient.

Well yeah, if such a thing were possible.

I think that’s what a lot of people do. I did some research on vitiligo (just out of curiosity) a while back. Darned if I can remember any of my sources though.

The upshot was that it was quite common for people with vitiligo, especially black people, to use makeup to match the darker tone. ( Dermablend is a very popular product.) For obvious reasons, it’s usually easier to darken the light areas than vice versa. While there are procedures that can lighten the darker areas, they tend to have some serious risks. Also, since the vitiligo patches can change over time, or even start to go away, any permanent procedure is likely to backfire.

As far as Michael Jackson goes: I have no problem believing that he does have vitiligo. But even if he does, unless he has an extroadinarily severe case, it doesn’t explain why he’s “turned white.” He may have had procedures to lighten the dark patches, or he may just choose to use a light-toned makeup.

But the weird thing about Michael Jackson and the vitiligo thing is that if he does in fact have it, why doesn’t he do some public education or charitable work related to the condition? So many celebrities who have found themselves ill or disabled have done a lot to help raise awareness of the condition and money for research on it. He loves to talk about how philanthropic he is, but other than claiming to have the disease, he doesn’t do anything to try and help others with it or find a cure. And he certainly has never publicly revealed any patchy skin. I mean, he doesn’t have to show his un-made-up face or anything if that’s too painful for him, but he could show a forearm or something. Which all makes me think that maybe he doesn’t have it after all.

In other words, something doesn’t quite add up.

And, IMHO, that’s what makes people so willing to believe that something not-quite-right is going on in any and all other areas of his life. Whatever it is, it just doesn’t add up.

Speaking as one who has it, in no way do I want Jackson to be the poster child for this disease. We get enough odd stares and rude comments as it is, thank you.
For all we know, he did contact whatever association is out there and was turned down. I hope so.