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What Are the Different Types of Alopecia?

The word alopecia itself is a term specifically used for hair loss yet there are many subtypes of alopecia. These are the three primary subtypes of alopecia:

  • Alopecia Areata – Patchy loss of hair whether that means patches on your legs, arms, pubic region, scalp, lashes or brows.
  • Alopecia Totalis – Total (or near total) loss of facial hair and scalp hair (vellus or otherwise)
  • Alopecia Universalis – Total loss of all bodily and scalp hair (vellus or otherwise)

Each of the terms are for more descriptive purposes since the each of the types can sometimes be vague and symptoms may seem to “overlap” each other in places. For example, a person who is diagnosed as Alopecia Universalis may have hair growing on her left knee. Does this make the person Alopecia Totalis instead?

One Comment

  1. vanessa says:

    Hi!
    I am a twenty one year old and have recently been diagnosed with alopecia and I was devestated. I have long curly hair that used to be thick. I noticed my hair falling out starting in the mid summer this year around July. My hair started suddenly falling out SEVERELY about two months ago in September.
    I fixed my diet to extremely healthy scalp foods, I started prenatals, and exercised even more. I was generally very healthy even before completely cracking down on a strick healthy life style. I changed my hair product to Morracain Oil shampoo and Conditioner and continued to use the leave in oil.
    The only thing I could think the trigger could have been is stress. I am a single mom and I go to nursing school and work in an emergency room. But in my past I had been a lot more stressed than this time of my life and my hair had no problems. At least not this noticable.
    During the begining of September, there was a period of two week of having a dry scalp that felt irritated, my hair really started to fall out, and I noticed some bleeding near the front of my scalp in one area. The dandruff was not severe at all. My scalp was mostly irritated. Near the frontal area on the sides of my head I noticed my scalp seemed to have a pinkish color to it and more hair loss in those two areas causing a receding hair line. After two more weeks, the dryness and irritation stopped, there was no more dandruff. My scalp is still sensitive though.

    I waited a few weeks to see if the symptoms would pass, they did somewhat, but I noticed I was starting to get ance and my face was getting so incredibly oily. I finally decided to see my Dr. After seeing my Dr. who reffered me to a Dermatologist she finally did a biopsy on my scalp near the irritated area and blood work. The results had come back that I have alopecia. My did blood work. My thyroid came back within normal limits. My iron was on the lower end of the limits so I incorporated more iron into my diet.

    I have an appointment this up coming Tuesday. She started me on 50mg twice a day Spirolactone and I changed my shampoo to Sense through Usana and continue to use the morraccain oil leave in oil. I also take Whole Foods prenatal vitamins. I have been on this change for about 2 weeks now since October 24th and there has been a little bit change but my hair is so unbelievably thin compared to what it was a few months ago. I have hair everywhere else on my body. My hair on my face has no changed. I dont know what kind of alopecia this is because it doesn’t seem to fit in in the above categories. There are no bald patches anywhere, this is not hereditary. My hair is falling out all over my scalp. My hairline is being pushed back too.

    My question is, what is the fastest, best solution and treatment to this issue without side affects or cause more damage? How can I get my hair to grow back? Will it grow back? and if it will grow back what are the chances it will fall out again? How can i prevent it from falling out? How long will it take if it can grow back? I am so scared I will loose all my hair at the rate it is going. I truly need help and could use some words of encouragement and answers.
    Thank you all and I truly understand how frusterating this is! Good luck to all,
    Vanessa

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