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Alopecia Areata a condition affecting either sex in which one or more bald patches appear

Alopecia Areata (symptoms-bald patches) is a condition affecting either sex in which one or more bald patches appear which may coalesce to involve much of the scalp. Other symptoms may include characteristic stubble, and exclamation hairs.   The lesions may appear pink and spongy. The hair may eventually re-grow. Recurrence is always a possibility.


Alopecia Areata

This form of hair loss is a microscopically-inflammatory often spontaneously reversible loss of hair presenting as sharply-defined patches of baldness (sometimes presents as a diffuse hair loss). It can involve scalp, beard, or other hair-bearing skin. It is widely regarded as an organ-specific autoimmune response (an activity of the immune system), but some suggest psychosomatic implications. There may be predisposition in families with a history of thyroid abnormality, eczema, asthma or hay-fever. Alopecia Areata can reportedly follow excessive, sudden or prolonged stress (mental or physical), post-surgery, direct physical or psychological injury, bereavement, financial crises and other human emotions inculcating the autonomic nervous system (sympathetic and parasympathetic) – which are generally beyond the control of the individual and may involve a breakdown within the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems – adversely affecting hair-growth mechanisms. Body-chemistry abnormalities may also be implicated.


This disease can have a profound impact on the lives of both children and adults. Its onset can be sudden, unpredictable and recurrent. It progresses as hair-follicles prematurely enter catagen, telogen and exogen. The disease is not fully understood.


Existing white or non-pigmented hairs usually remain intact in the development of an Alopecia Areata lesion.   This phenomenon is not understood although by definition white hair-shafts have inactive melanocytes at their germinal matrix at the time of onset of the condition.

We observe that the disease, which may present as single or multiple bald patches of varying size which may coalesce may commence 6-12 weeks following the ’cause’. In some instances hair losses have been reported within days.



Alopecia Areata as an autoimmune disease, the epidemiology, diagnosis and treatments are currently available via you Westminster Trichologist at “The Hair Centre.”

Alopecia Areata is therefore the name given to hair loss in circumscribed bald patches, principally of the scalp and beard but potentially affecting any region of hairy skin. Alopecia of the beard should more correctly be termed Alopecia Barbae.
Alopecia Areata can progress to Alopecia Totalis (complete hair loss of the scalp).
Alopecia Areata can in rare cases progress into Alopecia Universalis (complete loss of all body hair). In this instance the prognosis is poor.
The aetiology of Alopecia Areata is not fully understood but it is believed to be an autoimmune response.
In many cases Alopecia Areata has a common denominator of stress or injury, but not all scientists support the theory.

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This entry was posted on Wednesday, April 1st, 2009 at 11:13 am and is filed under ALOPECIA AREATA, HAIR LOSS [ PHOTOS ] TREATED. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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