Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Alopecia Areata Overview

What is alopecia areata?
A person with alopecia areata has hair loss that occurs in patches on the scalp. The cause of alopecia areata is unknown. For some reason, the immune system mistakenly attacks the hair follicles, causing inflammation and hair loss.

What are the symptoms of alopecia areata?
The most common symptom of alopecia areata is mild to severe hair loss.

How does the doctor treat alopecia areata?
Alopecia areata can be difficult to treat. Treatment for alopecia areata may include topical corticosteroids, anthralin therapy, corticosteroid injections, minoxidil, and finasteride.

Continue to Alopecia Areata Incidence

Last Updated: Nov 10, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Alopecia Areata References
  1. Lenane P, Pope E, Krafchik B. Congenital alopecia areata. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2005 Feb;52(2 Suppl 1):8-11. [15692503]
  2. Rainforth SI. Historical diagnostic and treatment. Alopecia areata. Skinmed. 2005 Jan-Feb;4(1):5. [16138410]
  3. Sladden MJ, MacDonald Hull SP, Wood ML, Hutchinson PE, Messenger AG. Alopecia areata: the need for guidelines and evidence-based dermatology. Br J Dermatol. 2005 May;152(5):1086-7. [15888188]
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