The medical term for hair loss is alopecia. There are many types of hair loss. Hair loss can be localized or diffuse (i.e. involving large areas and/or different areas on the body). It can affect any part of the body and most commonly affects the scalp. Hair may shed, thin out, or simply have poor quality and texture.
There are two main types of hair loss: scarring and nonscarring. Although there is hair loss in both types, the main difference is whether the hair follicle (the body’s working parts to grow hair) is destroyed or not. In scarring alopecia, the hair follicle is destroyed and in non-scarring alopecia, it is not.
Scarring hair loss occurs from several causes such as when the body’s immune system attacks the hair follicles, destroying them and leading to scarring. Unfortunately, once the follicles are scarred, the hair cannot regrow. Some examples of scarring hair loss include:
In contrast, nonscarring hair loss occurs when the growth cycles of the hair are interrupted, causing the hair to shed, stop growing, or reduce in quality. However, because the hair follicle is not destroyed, there is potential to regrow hair. Nonscarring hair loss can be due to many different causes:
Other causes of hair loss (these can be either scarring or non-scarring):
<-w->Treatment for hair loss depends on the diagnosis.
Both topical and oral medications can be used in the treatment of alopecia and it depends on the cause of the hair loss.
<-w->Several procedures are directed at improving hair loss:
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