Alopecia areata can be particularly aggressive in some cases, and manifests itself in the losing of ones hair in patches of varying sizes.
Alopecia areata can affect men, women and children of all ages and all ethnicities. Most cases first develop in teenagers and children and can lie dormant for many years, sometimes recurring again in later life. Others begin to experience symptoms in childhood and continue to do so for the rest of their lives.
In about 6 in 10 cases the first patch of hair loss develops before the age of 20 years. All things being equal, males and females are equally affected by alopecia areata.
The exact number of people affected by alopecia areata is not known. Estimates vary between 1 in 1000 to 2 in 100 people being affected at some point in their life.
The typical pattern is for one or more bald patches to appear on the scalp. These tend to be round in shape, and about the size of a large coin. They develop quite quickly. A relative, friend, or hairdresser may be the first person to notice the bald patch or patches. Apart from the bald patch or patches, the scalp usually looks healthy and there is no scarring. Occasionally, there is some mild redness, mild scaling, mild burning, or a slight itchy feeling on the bald patches.
Alopecia Areata can sometimes disappear as fast as it appeared. In other cases it can be frequently recurrent, varying greatly in both timescale and severity. It is fair to say that for many people, Alopecia Areata can be very difficult to live with.
The video above shows Dean, a client of HIS Hair Clinics, and his battle with Alopecia Areata.