Does hair density in scarring alopecias ever improve?
1.The hair loss that occurs in most scarring alopecias is usually permanent
For the most part, the hair loss that occurs in a group of conditions known as scarring alopecias is permanent. Medical treatment is administered to stop the hair loss or slow the hair loss. Once the disease is stable, a hair transplant can be done to add density to the areas of hair loss. We are increasingly transplanting patients with scarring alopecia.
2. Treating early-staged scarring alopecias aggressively provides chance for regrowth
If aggressively treated, some scarring alopecias can not only be brought under control but some of the hairs that were injured but not completed destroyed can produce a new hair.
Take a look at the high magnification photo of a patient with early scarring alopecia who is under aggressive treatment. Three months into treatment, she is sprouting new hairs. You can see one of these new hairs right in the middle of the photo.
While we will need to wait to see just how much regrowth will occur, this is an important observation. Even if we can't completely reverse the disease, sprouting a few new hairs will limit the overall visibility of the scalp and help provide better camouflage. The patient hopes to have a hair transplant someday, and by regenerating a couple hundred hairs, we'll need to use less hairs when it comes to performing the hair transplant down the road.
Dr. Jeff Donovan is a Canadian and US board certified dermatologist specializing exclusively in hair loss. To schedule a consultation, please call the Whistler office at 604.283.1887