Chronic Telogen Effluvium: How does density change over time?
Chronic Telogen Effluvium (CTE) and Androgenetic alopecia (AGA) are both commonly encountered diagnoses in women age 40-70 years. They are however, very different conditions.
AGA: Androgenetic Alopecia
AGA presents with hair thinning and sometimes increased daily shedding as well. The loss of hair is sometimes just frontal in location or the crown but can be diffuse (all over). A key to the diagnosis is recognition of the progressive reduction in the caliber (diameter) of hairs.
CTE: Chronic Telogen Efflvuium
Patients with CTE can appear to have a similar story. Many have a sudden onset of shedding. The shedding is diffuse. The temples may be particularly affected with reduced density to a much more significant degree than seen in AGA. Reduced hair caliber (miniaturization) is not a feature of CTE. CTE has periods where shedding appears to slow considerably or even stop. When one follows these conditions for many years there is a realization of another important difference: Density in CTE reduces initially but then plateaus and does not reduce further. Density in AGA continues to drop off over time. These points are illustrated in the graph.
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