AUTOIMMUNE SCALP DISORDERS

Alopecia Areata

Alopecia areata is a rare autoimmune disorder that causes the body to attack hair follicles, which leads to hair loss. 

When you have alopecia areata, you may recognize patchy hair loss that usually presents itself as a single oval patch or multiple patches of asymptomatic, well-circumscribed, nonscarring alopecia. You may notice a small bare patch or lose all hair in entire areas of the scalp. 

Common treatments include corticosteroids and immunotherapy (designed to create an allergic reaction that causes hair regrowth), as most others are speculative at best. If you have patchy hair loss, you’ll want to visit a dermatologist for the correct diagnosis.

Lupus

Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease affecting the joints, skin, brain, lungs, kidneys, and blood vessels. Some people with lupus can also encounter hair loss issues. 

A clinical study showed nonscarring hair loss in four women with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and reported hair loss of varying degrees. Some women experienced widespread hair loss, while others lost their hair in localized areas of their scalp. 

Hair loss caused by lupus may be reversible if you can control the disease. Follow your doctor’s advice and take your medications as directed. Once under control, you should experience minimized hair loss and hair regrowth. Discuss any treatments with your lupus specialist or primary care provider.

Lichen Planopilaris (Lichen Planus)

Lichen planus is an autoimmune disease that can cause swelling, ulcers, and irritation of mucous membranes, skin, hair, and nails. While it’s most common in the oral or genital region, it occasionally impacts the scalp through a condition called lichen planopilaris. 

Lichen planopilaris is a rare inflammatory condition that can lead to scaly skin, redness, dry and flakey skin, bald patches, pain, and itchiness of the scalp. Lichen planopilaris is unique in that it usually occurs in individuals ages 30 to 60. While lichen planus is equally common for men and women, women are far more likely to get oral planus and scalp planopilaris. Fifty percent of all cases are oral.

The cause of this autoimmune disorder is still unknown. However, medical professionals believe that the body’s white blood cells recognize skin and hair cells as harmful invaders and react by attacking them. Several treatments exist, from retinoids and corticosteroids to anti-malarial drugs. At MAXIM Hair Restoration, we believe it’s always best to try a less invasive method first since those medications have more significant impacts on your overall health and can weaken your hair over time. 

Low-level laser therapy has shown to be effective for many types of hair loss, planopilaris included, and is a treatment that individuals can regularly undergo in the comfort of their homes. 

We recommend using the MAXIM Laser Cap, which requires only a seven-minute treatment to use every other day for the best results. MAXIM’s Laser Cap uses the highest quality laser diodes set to proper wavelengths to provide the best results. Additionally, you can seek a complimentary consultation. Some regenerative procedures also show promise to those suffering from lichen planopilaris.