- by Dr Jaya Sharma
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- Aug 02 2017
Losing patches of hair-Alopecia Areata?
What is alopecia areata? (Causes)
Alopecia areata is a kind of hair loss that appears when your immune system accidently strikes hair follicles, which is where hair growth begins. The injury to the follicle is usually not persistent. Specialists do not know why the immune system strikes the follicles. Alopecia areata is most frequent in people younger than twenty, but adults and children of any age may be influenced. Women and men are equally affected.
What happens in alopecia areata? (Symptoms)
Alopecia areata usually atarts when bunch of hair fall out, resulting in completely smooth, round hairless patches on the scalp or other parts of the body. In some cases without noticeable patches of baldness, the hair may become thinner or it may grow and break off, leaving short ends also known as"exclamation point". In exceptional cases, complete loss of scalp hair and body hair happens. The hair loss often comes and goes-hair will grow back over some months in one portion but will fall out in another portion.
The hair usually grows back in a few months, when alopecia areata results in patches of hair loss. Although the new hair is generally the same color and texture as the rest of the hair, it sometimes is white and fine.
About ten percent of individuals with this problem may never regrow hair. One is more likely to have permanent hair loss if:
Have a family history of the disorder.
Have the problem at a young age (before puberty) or for longer than one year.
Have another autoimmune disease.
Is prone to allergies (atopy).
Have considerable hair loss.
Have atypical shape, color, texture, or thickness of the toenails or fingernails.
Because hair is a major part of appearance, hair loss can result in feeling ugly.
In some individuals with alopecia areata, the toenails and fingernails become uneven-they look as if a pin had made many tiny dents in them. They may also look very rough.
Alopecia areata can be treated but cannot be "cured". MManyost people who have one episode will have more episodes of hair loss.
Tests and diagnosis of alopecia areata
Doctors are generally able to detect alopecia areata fairly easily by studying symptoms. They might look at the intensity of hair loss and inspect hairs from affected areas under a microscope.
If, after an initial clinical examination, the physician is not able to make a diagnosis, they can conduct a skin biopsy. If they need to detect out other autoimmune diseases, they may also conduct a blood test.
As the symptoms of alopecia areata are so typical, making a detection is usually quick and simple.
Treatments for alopecia areata
Although there are some kinds of treatment that can be recommended by specialists to help hair re-grow more swiftly, unfortunately, currently there is no cure for alopecia areata.
The most common form of alopecia areata treatment is the use of powerful anti-inflammatory drugs, corticosteroids,that can overpower the immune system. These can be controlled through local injections which are most common, topical ointment application, or orally.
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