Alopecia areata: What is the, Diagnosis, and How is it Tested

What is Alopecia areata?

  Alopecia areata is a common autoimmune skin disease, causing hair loss on the scalp, face and sometimes on other areas of the body. According to national alopecia areata fundation affects as many as 6.8 million people in U.S, with a lifetime risk of 2.1% .
   In recent time, all effort has been made to restore self esteem and their confidence of boy or girl suffering from this medical condition. The recipients suffering from this condition are children, age 21 and under, suffering from long-term medical hair loss from any diagnosis.

    A foundation called locks of love have done so much in recent years.
What is locks of love?: locks of love is a non-profit organization that provides hairpieces to financially disadvantaged children in the United States and Canada under age 21 suffering from long term medical hair loss.
They help the children in a unique way by using donated hair to create the highest quality hair prostheties. Most of the children helped by locks of love have lost their hair due to medical condition.
Benefits to children: According to locks of love many Chidren who receive hair pieces have lost more than their hair; they suffer from a loss of self. Many children have been teased by classmates and / or embarrassed by the attention they receive because of their hair loss.
Some children will withdraw from normal childhood activities such as swimming, going to the mall or even playing with their friends. You can visit this foundation on how to donate hair or help from their website locks of love 


 What can cause hair to fall out in patches?

  In addition to above mentioned, children who suffer from an autoimmune disorder called alopecia areata , which causes the hair follicles to shut down. In addition to the loss of scalp hair, many also lose their eyelashes, eyebrows and all body hair.
This hair loss is permanent in most cases; and there is no known cause or cure. Other recipients have been victim of severe burns, cancer survivors, or suffer from any number of skin disorders that cause permanent hair loss.

How is Alopecia areata diagnose?

Alopecia areata is diagnosed through a medical history and physical examination.

Some of the medical history include but not limited to:
  1. A doctor will ask the patient if there is a family history of the condition .
  2.  Have the condition at a young age or for longer than 1 year.
  3.  Have another autoimmune disease.
  4. Are prone to allergies.
  5. Have extensive hair loss.
  6. Have abnormal color, shape, texture or thickness of the finger-nails.
WebMD discuss further on alopecia areata- Topic overview.

Your doctor will ask you questions about your hair loss, look at the pattern of your hair loss, and examine your scalp. And he or she may tug gently on a few hair or even pull some out.

How do you get tested for alopecia?

  If the reason of your hair loss is not clear, your doctor may do tests to check for a disease that could be causing your hair loss. Test include:

  - Hair analysis

  - Blood test, including testing for a specific condition, such as an overactive or under active thyroid gland ( hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism ). 

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