Alopecia of the scalp

December 2016


Definition


Alopecia of the scalp is a form of alopecia (hair loss) that is manifested by a loss of hair in patches. The causes of this phenomenon are not yet precisely determined. This disease is currently considered to be an autoimmune disease, i.e. due to the aggression of cells in the body by their own antibodies. Alopecia areata often occurs in an individual in good shape and can affect both men and women of any age. Alopecia areata is not a serious illness and does not cause complications. But it can have serious psychological consequences on a person's quality of life.

Symptoms


Alopecia areata is characterized by a loss of entire patches of hair, typically called sclerosis. Aside from well-defined areas, the rest of the scalp is normal. These losses can affect any part of the scalp. On these areas of varying shape and size (usually between 1 and 5 cm in diameter), the skin appears smooth, shiny, with scar, while the hair on the edge of the patch will be shorter and thicker at the ends (called alopecia hair). Depending on the severity of the infringement, the term alopecia decalvans can be used if it affects the entire scalp, or universal alopecia if it affects the entire body.

Diagnosis


The diagnosis of alopecia areata is clinical, and no other additional examination is necessary.

Treatment


In the vast majority of cases, the hair will grow back itself over a period of 6-18 months. However, different treatments, such as corticosteroids or topical application of minoxidil, will promote hair regrowth in some extended forms. In cases of greater areata, powerful treatments may be considered like PUVA using ultraviolet rays. In addition, psychological support can help.

Prevention


Its causes being still unknown, there is nothing now to prevent the onset of alopecia of the scalp.

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Published by Jeff. Latest update on July 23, 2013 at 11:31 AM by Jeff.
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