Woman with Vitiligo Claims Her Symptoms Improved after Suffering 2 Strokes

By: Alec Donaldson | Published: Jan 31, 2024

A woman suffering from vitiligo claims her symptoms partially reversed after she experienced two strokes in less than three years.

Iomikoe Johnson argues the medication prescribed to her after her stroke may have helped parts of the affected skin return to its original shade. 

Texas Woman Suffers from Skin Condition

Johnson, a native of Texas, has been suffering from a skin condition, vitiligo, for over two decades.

Iomikoe Johnson takes a selfie wearing a blue jean jacket in her car

Source: @CassBankson/X

Vitiligo is an autoimmune disease that causes the skin to lose its natural color in large patches.

Human Cells under Attack

According to health experts, the chronic disorder develops when cells that produce the skin’s pigment are attacked.

A doctor injects a needle into the arm of a patient who comes to his practice

Source: Freepik

When the cells are under stress and vitiligo begins to set in, the individual’s skin turns white. Typically, this will begin on the face, hands, and genital region.

Two Decades with Vitiligo

Born a black woman, Johnson was diagnosed with the condition when she was just 25 years old. 

Iomikoe Johnson is pictured wearing an oversized brown fur coat and a matching hat

Source: @CNNIndonesia/X

By 43, she claims, around 60% of her skin had turned white due to the autoimmune disorder.  

Unsual Recovery Process

After suffering from two strokes, Johnson claims small portions of her skin began to return to its natural color miraculously. 

A female doctor checks in on a patient who recently went through surgery

Source: Freepik

Now, the Texan postulates the idea that the reversal may be linked to the medication she was prescribed after her stroke. 

Breakthrough in the Medical World

If the medication proves to be the reason behind the reversal of vitiligo, it would be a breakthrough in medical work, as there’s currently no cure for the disorder. 

A large group of doctors gather around a white desk to partake in a meeting

Source: Freepik

However, there are a few minor treatments that can help repair some of the skin’s lost color.


Three Million Americans Affected

Best estimates surmise close to 3 million Americans currently suffer from vitiligo.

A group of women gather together and hold the hand of a woman suffering from Vitiligo

Source: Freepik

Johnson said, “One day I woke up and I had a spot underneath my eye and a spot underneath my arm. I went to see my primary healthcare physician, who recommended me to a dermatologist, and then I was diagnosed with vitiligo following that visit.”


The Condition Continues to Worsen

As the years passed by, Johnson’s condition worsened to the point where large patches of her skin began turning white.

Iomikoe Johnson takes part in a photoshoot in a white room

Source: @KneWKeeD/X

However, things only got worse for the Texas native. One morning, in 2020, she awoke with an unusual slur in her speech and blurred vision. 


Johnson Suffers from a Stroke

Immediately, Johnson knew she needed medical attention. “I told my husband I wasn’t feeling well and that I think I needed to go to the hospital,” she said

An ambulance is parked with a doctor, its back door open, as a doctor prepares to inspect a patient

Source: Freepik

Johnson continued, “They discovered that I had a stroke.” Three years later, the Texan suffered from another stroke while she was on a walk. 


Skin Condition Begins to Reverse

After going through six weeks of physical therapy, Johnson began to notice that parts of her skin previously affected by the symptoms of vitiligo had actually started to reverse.

A woman with vitiligo shakes hands with a white woman

Source: Freepik

“Some of my pigmentation has returned,” she said. “I was shocked when I saw the re-pigmentation on my nose.”


Medication Aids in Reversing Symptoms

While it’s unclear as to what triggered the reversal, Johnson believes the seven different drugs she was prescribed after her stroke played a role.

A woman holds out her hand as she receives various green and blue pills

Source: Freepik

Yet, according to the British Heart Foundation, some of the drugs, like blood thinners used to prevent clotting, may cause bruises, resulting in the appearance of the skin changing color. 


Doctors Claim Stroke Can Lead to Change in Skin Color

Other health experts are under the impression that the stroke itself played a role in the minor change of skin color. The American Stroke Association claims “changes in skin color, along with numbness, tingling, burning, aching, and decreased range of motion,” can result from a stroke. 

A white-haired doctor sits down at his desk to speak with a patient

Source: Freepik

“Over time, insufficient delivery of oxygen and nutrients can cause skin in the affected limb to change texture,” the American Stroke Association states.