Losing patches of hair suddenly? You might have alopecia areata!
We understand that this is a very stressful situation. We are here to help you.
What is alopecia areata?
Alopecia areata is a common autoimmune hair disorder that results in unpredictable and patchy hair loss.
Alopecia Areata is commonly diagnosed based on the clinical appearance of your hair falling out in small patches around the size of a coin.
For most people, the hair loss is nothing more than a few patches, though in some cases it can be more severe.
Sometimes, it can lead to the complete loss of hair on the scalp (alopecia totalis) or, in extreme cases, the entire body (alopecia universalis).
The condition can affect anyone regardless of age and gender.
How is alopecia areata diagnosed?
Alopecia areata is diagnosed based on clinical features.
Under high magnification trichoscopy, we will see “yellow dots” (hyperkeratotic plugs), small exclamation-mark hairs, and “black dots” (destroyed hairs in the hair follicle opening).
What causes alopecia areata?
Alopecia areata is an auto-immune condition that occurs when white blood cells attack the cells in your hair follicles, causing them to shrink and dramatically slow down hair production. It is unknown precisely what causes the body’s immune system to target hair follicles in this way.
There might be a genetic cause because alopecia areata is more likely to occur in a person who has a close family member with the disease. One in five people with the disease has a family member who has also developed alopecia areata.
Other research has found that there is an association between alopecia areata and personal or family history of other autoimmune disorders such as atopy, thyroiditis and vitiligo.
Fret not! Alopecia aerate is NOT contagious.
What are the other possible diagnosis apart from Alopecia Areata?
There are other types of hair loss like androgenetic alopecia, acute telogen effluvium and drug-induced alopecia.
See an expert hair loss doctor for accurate diagnosis and treatment. Often times, just a medical history, physical check and hair examination is sufficient to determine the cause of your hair loss.
In rare cases whereby the diagnosis is not clear, blood tests and biopsy might be needed for definitive diagnosis.
How does a hair loss doctor diagnose alopecia areata?
Apart from taking a detailed medical history, physical check and hair examination, hair loss doctor will perform dermoscopy, which is looking at your hair and scalp in detail at high magnifications.
We are looking for black dots, broken hairs and tapering hairs (these are indicative of strong disease activity), and short vellus hairs (characteristic of remitting disease).
What is the cost/ price of Alopecia Areata Treatment in Singapore?
Alopecia areata treatment costs from the price of $250/ session for corticosteroid injections and oral medications.
What are the effective treatments for Alopecia Areata in Singapore?
Alopecia areata is an auto-immune hair loss condition that is challenging to treat.
At Sozo Aesthetic Clinic, we provide one of the most comprehensive suite of hair loss solutions in Singapore to give you the best chance of full hair regrowth.
First line treatments for Alopecia Areata
- Intralesional triamcinolone
- Potent topical steroids
Second line for Alopecia Areata
- Topical minoxidil +/- topical steroids
Third line for Alopecia Areata
- Topical immunotherapy
- Topical PUVA
What is the most common treatment for Alopecia Areata in Singapore?
Intralesional triamcinolone (corticosteroids) is the most common treatment for alopecia areata in Singapore.
Frequency of intralesional triamcinolone for alopecia areata is every 1 month.
Total number of treatment sessions of intralesional triamcinolone for alopecia areata is 3-6 sessions.
Possible side effects of intralesional triamcinolone includes skin atrophy.
How is Alopecia Areata classified in Singapore?
Alopecia Areata can manifest in different areas of your body and in different severity.
Diffuse Alopecia Areata: If you lose hair diffusely over the whole scalp.
Alopecia areata monolocularis: baldness in only one spot.
Alopecia areata multilocularis: multiple areas of hair loss.
Alopecia areata barbae: hair loss limited only to the beard.
Alopecia areata totalis: total hair loss on the scalp.
Alopecia areata universalise: loss of all body hair, including pubic hair.
When will my hair grow back after alopecia areata?
For most cases of Alopecia areata, hair grows back after a few months to a year. In cases with a greater number of patches, hair loss might progress to alopecia areata totalis or, in rare cases, alopecia areata universalis.
Alopecia areata does not cause any loss of body function or health.
The effects of alopecial areata are mainly psychological due to negative self-image related to hair loss.
If you think you have alopecia areata, contact us for treatment now.