Tapered and Exclamation Mark Hairs in Alopecia Areata

Tapered & Exclamation Hairs in AA indicate Activity

tapped

Tapered Hairs

Tapered hairs are frequently seen in patients with small circular patches of alopecia areata. In contrast to 4-5 mm exclamation mark hairs (see next post), tapered hairs are long and typically as long as neighboring hairs. As the hair enters into the skin it becomes much thinner. At the bottom of the tapered hair (deep under the skin) is inflammation.

Tapered are important findings in patients with patchy stage alopecia areata as they tell us that the condition is active and that anti-inflammatory type treatments (such as cortisone injections) are likely to help. The above photo shows several tapered hairs (TH).

 

Exclamation Hairs

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Exclamation mark hairs are frequently seen in patients with small circular patches of alopecia areata. These hairs a short 4-5 mm hairs and represent broken hairs. The top is thick and the end is often frayed. As the hair enters into the skin it becomes much thinner. At the bottom of the exclamation mark hair (deep under the skin) is inflammation. Exclamation mark hairs are important findings in patients with patchy stage alopecia areata as they tell us that the condition is active and that anti-inflammatory type treatments (such as cortisone injections) are likely to help. The photo shows several exclamation mark hairs (EMH).


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



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