Alopecia areata often presents suddenly with loss of the hair at the follicle and can involve several areas of the scalp or total hair loss on the body. It is often psychologically debilitating and does not have a cure. Referral to a dermatology specialist is often required, especially if the practitioner is not familiar with prescribing intralesional steroids or immunomodulators. Treatment is optional and corticosteroids (topical and local injections) are the first line of treatment. Most patients see hair regrowth between 6 months to a year, but repeat hair loss is common. The NAAF provides families and patients with support and education and funds current research on the diagnosis.
Conflicts of interest
The author has served on a NP/PA Advisory Board Committee for Alcon Laboratories.
J Pediatr Health Care. 2011;25(4):261-265. © 2011 Mosby, Inc.