Efficacy of Qigong for the treatment of alopecia universalis:a clinical case report

Alopecia (al-oh-PEE-shah) means hair loss. When a person has a medical condition called alopecia areata (ar-ee-AH-tah), the hair falls out in round patches. The hair can fall out on the scalp and elsewhere on the body.

Alopecia is not contagious. It is not due to nerves. What happens is that the immune system attacks the hair follicles (structures that contain the roots of the hair), causing hair loss. This disease most often occurs in otherwise healthy people.

Sometimes the dermatologist will perform a skin biopsy to confirm that the disease is alopecia areata. To perform a skin biopsy, the dermatologist removes a small piece of skin so that it can be studied under a microscope.

There is no cure for alopecia areata. Hair often re-grows on its own. Treatment can help the hair re-grow more quickly. A dermatologist may prescribe one or more of the following to help the hair re-grow more quickly:

Researchers are working to advance the treatment of alopecia areata. They are exploring other medicines that work on the patient’s immune system. They also are looking at lasers and other light-based therapies.

When a person has alopecia areata, the hair will start to re-grow when the body gets the right signals. Sometimes this happens without treatment. Even with treatment, new hair loss can occur. Everything depends on how the immune system reacts.

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Sometimes, it can lead to the complete loss of hair on the scalp (alopecia totalis) or, in extreme cases, the entire body (alopecia universalis).

The condition can affect anyone regardless of age and gender, though most cases occur before the age of 30.

The most common form of alopecia areata treatment is the use of corticosteroids, powerful anti-inflammatory drugs that can suppress the immune system. These are mostly commonly administered through local injections, topical ointment application, or orally.

Other medications that can be prescribed that either promote hair growth or affect the immune system include Minoxidil, Anthralin, SADBE, and DPCP. Although some of these may help with the re-growth of hair, they cannot prevent the formation of new bald patches.

Alopecia areata does not directly make people sick, nor is it contagious. It can, however, be difficult to adapt to emotionally. For many people, alopecia areata is a traumatic disease that warrants treatment addressing the emotional aspect of hair loss, as well as the hair loss itself.

Alopecia areata has been compared by some to vitiligo, an autoimmune skin disease where the body attacks melanin-producing cells, leading to white patches. Research suggests that these two conditions may share a similar pathogenesis, with similar types of immune cells and cytokines driving the diseases and common genetic risk factors.

Preliminary research in animals has found that quercetin, a naturally occurring bioflavonoid found in fruits and vegetables, can protect against the development of alopecia areata and effectively treat existing hair loss.

The condition occurs when white blood cells attack the cells in hair follicles, causing them to shrink and dramatically slow down hair production. It is unknown precisely what causes the body’s immune system to target hair follicles in this way.

While scientists are unsure why these changes occur, it seems that genetics are involved as alopecia areata is more likely to occur in a person who has a close family member with the disease. One in five people with the disease has a family member who has also developed alopecia areata.

Other research has found that many people with a family history of alopecia areata also have a personal or family history of other autoimmune disorders, such as atopy, a disorder characterized by a tendency to be hyperallergic, thyroiditis, and vitiligo.

Despite what many people think, there is very little scientific evidence to support the view that alopecia areata is caused by stress. Extreme cases of stress could potentially trigger the condition, but most recent research points toward a genetic cause.

There are some people that recommend rubbing onion or garlic juice, cooled green tea, almond oil, rosemary oil, honey, or coconut milk into the scalp. While none of these are likely to cause harm, their effectiveness is also not supported by research.

The most prominent symptom of alopecia areata is patchy hair loss. Coin-sized patches of hair begin to fall out, mainly from the scalp. Any site of hair growth may be affected, though, including the beard and eyelashes.

The loss of hair can be sudden, developing in just a few days or over a period of a few weeks. There may be itching or burning in the area before hair loss. The hair follicles are not destroyed and so hair can re-grow if the inflammation of the follicles subsides. People who experience just a few patches of hair loss often have a spontaneous, full recovery without any form of treatment.

About half of patients recover from alopecia areata within 1 year, but many will experience more than one episode. Around 10 percent of people will go on to develop alopecia totalis or alopecia universalis.

Alopecia areata can also affect the fingernails and toenails, and sometimes these changes are the first sign that the condition is developing. There are a number of small changes that can occur to nails:

If, after an initial clinical examination, the doctor is not able to make a diagnosis, they can perform a skin biopsy. If they need to rule out other autoimmune diseases, they might perform a blood test.

Article last updated by Adam Felman on Fri 22 December 2017.

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All references are available in the References tab.

Açıkgöz. G, Yeşil, H., Çalışkan, E., Tunca, M., & Akar, A. (2013, October 9). Targeted photochemotherapy in alopecia areata [Abstract]. Photodermatology, Photoimmunology & Photomedicine, 29(6),318-22. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24102724

Nilforoushzadeh, M. A., Keshtmand, G., Jaffary, F., & Kheirkhah, A. (2012, July 1). Diphencyprone induced vitiligo: A case report [Abstract]. 2012:356236. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22811720

Wikramanayake, T. C., Villasante, A. C., Mauro, L. M., Perez, C. I., Schachner, L. A., & Jimenez, J. J. (2012, March). Prevention and treatment of alopecia areata with quercetin in the C3H/HeJ mouse model [Abstract]. 17(2):267-74. Retrieved from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22042611

© 2004-2019 All rights reserved. MNT is the registered trade mark of Healthline Media. Any medical information published on this website is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with a healthcare professional.

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With all forms of alopecia area, the body’s immune system attacks healthy hair follicles, which causes them to become smaller and decrease in production to the point where hair growth may stop altogether.

For people who have less than 50 percent hair loss, current treatment options work to disrupt or distract the immune attack and stimulate the hair follicle. For people who experience more than 50 percent hair loss, there are oral and injectable medications available. However, these treatments are not successful for everyone.

Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC) researchers conducted an open-label clinical trial – whereby both researchers and participants knew what treatment was administered – of 12 people with alopecia areata.

While there is currently no treatment capable of completely restoring hair, CUMC investigators have shown that topical and oral drugs that inhibit the Janus kinase (JAK) family of enzymes, known as JAK inhibitors, could potentially fill the role of stimulating hair regrowth.

“Although our study was small, it provides crucial evidence that JAK inhibitors may constitute the first effective treatment for people with alopecia areata,” says Dr. Julian Mackay-Wiggan, associate professor of dermatology and director of the Clinical Research Unit in the Department of Dermatology at CUMC, and a dermatologist at NewYork-Presbyterian/Columbia.

Previous research by the team revealed specific immune cells and dominant inflammatory signaling pathways that are responsible for attacking the hair follicle in people with alopecia areata, resulting in the follicle entering a dormant state.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have already approved two JAK inhibitors: a medication used to treat bone marrow malignancies called ruxolitinib, which was the focus of the CUMC research, and a treatment for rheumatoid arthritis called tofacitinib that the Stanford/Yale study explored.

“These disorders are both characterized by dysregulated signaling pathways, similar to alopecia areata, which is dominated by the interferon signaling pathway. Even though the diseases are very different, this common feature gave us the initial idea to test JAK inhibitors in people with alopecia,” says Dr. Raphael Clynes, Ph.D., associate professor of dermatology at CUMC.

The researchers tested their hypothesis by enrolling 12 people with moderate to severe alopecia with more than 30 percent hair loss. Participants were administered 20 milligrams of oral ruxolitinib twice a day for 3-6 months. Follow-up took place over a further 3 months to assess the permanence of treatment response.

Results showed that nine of the patients – 75 percent – presented 50 percent or more hair regrowth. By the end of the treatment period, 77 percent of participants who responded to ruxolitinib therapy achieved more than 95 percent hair regrowth.

Skin biopsies were performed before, during, and after treatment. In responders, the biopsies showed a reduction in levels of interferon signaling and cytotoxic T lymphocytes, which are indicators of inflammatory response. They also had increased levels of hair keratins, which are proteins that indicate hair growth. These levels are similar to those seen in people without alopecia areata.

People with alopecia areata who did not respond to treatment had lower levels of inflammatory signatures in biopsy results before treatment began, which may indicate that scientists could potentially distinguish between people who will and will not respond to treatment.

“We are very excited about the use of biomarkers to follow the response of patients to this treatment,” says Angela M. Christiano, Ph.D., the Richard and Mildred Rhodebeck professor of dermatology and professor of genetics and development at CUMC. “This will allow us to so monitor improvements in their gene expression signatures even before hair growth appears.”

“While larger, randomized trials are needed to confirm the safety and efficacy of ruxolitinib in people with moderate to severe alopecia areata, our initial results are very encouraging,” Mackay-Wiggan adds.

The Stanford/Yale study also showed a positive response to the JAK inhibitor tofacitinib. “Together, the two studies show that we’re on the right track,” says Dr. Christiano, a co-author of the tofacitinib paper.

Future research by the CUMC team will focus on testing JAK inhibitors in conditions such as vitiligo, scarring alopecia, and male pattern baldness. “We expect JAK inhibitors to have widespread utility across many forms of hair loss based on their mechanism of action in both the hair follicle and immune cells,” concludes Dr. Christiano.

© 2004-2019 All rights reserved. MNT is the registered trade mark of Healthline Media. Any medical information published on this website is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with a healthcare professional.

2019 Healthline Media UK Ltd. All rights reserved. MNT is the registered trade mark of Healthline Media. Any medical information published on this website is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with a healthcare professional.

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However, the immune system may not be the only cause of alopecia universalis. The National Alopecia Areata Foundation say alopecia areata can run in families. But, unlike many inherited conditions, both parents must contribute specific genes to pass alopecia areata on to their children.

This is known as a polygenic disease, which means “multiple genes.” Because it requires genes from both parents, many people with any form of alopecia areata, including alopecia universalis, will not pass the condition to their children.

This suggests that environment, combined with genetics and the immune system, could ultimately trigger the hair loss. This environmental trigger remains unknown and could be an illness, allergy, hormones, toxins — or any combination of these.

Alopecia universalis has not been proven to be related to stress. It is possible that extreme stress, combined with genetics and immune system problems, could trigger alopecia areata and universalis. No medical studies have proven this link, however.

Hair loss caused by stress is known as telogen effluvium. This type of hair loss is temporary and not related to immune or genetic factors. Usually, telogen effluvium is caused by physical or mental stress, such as severe illness, surgery, childbirth, emotionally stressful events, extreme diets, and medications.

The hair loss can happen very suddenly, producing bald spots in a matter of days. As it progresses to alopecia universalis, hair loss will continue to spread until there is no hair left on the head or body.

Alopecia universalis may be diagnosed with a physical exam and other medical tests. A healthcare professional or dermatologist may be able to diagnose the condition with a medical history and by checking for loss of hair throughout the body.

Support groups may be helpful to help people cope with hair loss. The National Alopecia Areata Foundation says nearly 150 million people worldwide have some form of alopecia areata. And, about 1 in 4,000 people in the world has alopecia universalis.

A cure has yet to be found, but new possibilities for treatment may offer hope for those with alopecia universalis. Recent statistics show that only 10 percent of people with alopecia universalis will experience a full recovery, so connecting with others through support groups is a valuable part of living with the condition.

Alopecia universalis does not pose any threat to a person’s physical health, but emotional health may be affected. Exploring support groups, clinical trials for new treatments, and organizations for those with hair loss may be helpful.

Article last reviewed by Fri 19 January 2018.

Visit our Dermatology category page for the latest news on this subject, or sign up to our newsletter to receive the latest updates on Dermatology.

All references are available in the References tab.

Chiang, K. S., Mesinkovska, N. A., Piliang, M. P., & Bergfeld, W. F. (2015, November). Clinical efficacy of diphenylcyclopropenone in alopecia areata: retrospective data analysis of 50 patients. Journal of Investigative Dermatology Symposium Proceedings 17(2), 50–55. Retrieved from http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1087002416300284

Cho, H. H., Jo, S. J., Paik, S. H., Jeon, H. C., Kim, K. H., Eun, H. C., … Kwon, O. S. (2012, July). Clinical characteristics and prognostic factors in early-onset alopecia totalis and alopecia universalis [Abstract]. Journal of Korean Medical Science, 27(7), 799–802. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3390731/

Craiglow, B. & King. B. (2014, July 17). Killing two birds with one stone: Oral tofacitinib reverses alopecia universalis in a patient with plaque psoriasis. Journal of Investigative Dermatology, 134, 2988-2991. Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/publication/263208380_Killing_Two_Birds_with_One_Stone_Oral_Tofacitinib_Reverses_Alopecia_Universalis_in_a_Patient_with_Plaque_Psoriasis

Craiglow, B. G., Tavares, D., & King, B. A. (2016). Topical ruxolitinib for the treatment of alopecia universalis. JAMA dermatology, 152(4), 490–491. Retrieved from https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamadermatology/fullarticle/2474311

Jaffe, A., Nir, Y., Zbar, A. P., Gonen-Shahar, M., & Gonen, S. (2016). Hair regrowth following topical HairUpTM treatment in subjects with alopecia totalis (AT) and alopecia universalis (AU): A retrospective analysis of efficacy and cosmetic acceptability. Hair Therapy & Transplant, 6(2. Retrieved from http://www.shmuel-gonen.com/files/hair-up-article.pdf

Rodriguez, T. A., Fernandes, K. E., Dresser, K. L., & Duvic, M. (2010). Concordance rate of alopecia areata in identical twins supports both genetic and environmental factors. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, 62(3), 525–527.Retrieved from http://www.jaad.org/article/S0190-9622(09)00143-1/fulltext

Tiwary, A. K., Mishra, D. K., & Chaudhary, S. S. (2016, June). Comparative study of efficacy and safety of topical squaric acid dibutylester and diphenylcyclopropenone for the treatment of alopecia areata. North American Journal of Medical Sciences, 8(6), 237–242. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4960932/

© 2004-2019 All rights reserved. MNT is the registered trade mark of Healthline Media. Any medical information published on this website is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with a healthcare professional.

2019 Healthline Media UK Ltd. All rights reserved. MNT is the registered trade mark of Healthline Media. Any medical information published on this website is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with a healthcare professional.

Although there are currently no treatments that work for everyone with alopecia areata, some treatments are effective for some people. Depending on which type of alopecia areata you have, your age and the extent of hair loss, there are a variety of treatment options available. The main goals of treatment are to block the immune system attack and/or stimulate the regrowth of hair. This can be effective, especially for people with milder forms of the disease (less than 50% hair loss).

For those who have more than 50% hair loss on their scalp or other areas of the body, there are also oral (taken as a pill) and topical (applied to the skin) medications available as well as phototherapy or light treatments.

While none of the medications or devices commonly used to treat alopecia areata are approved specifically for this disease by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), they have been approved for other diseases. It’s important to know that while these therapies may offer benefits to some people with alopecia areata, there is no single option that will work for everyone. Even if your hair is regrown, there is no guarantee that it won’t fall out again once treatment is stopped.

This is not an extensive review of all possible treatments, just an overview of the more common ones you are likely to encounter. It’s best to discuss all of your options for treatment with a dermatologist, who can work with you to find the right medications or therapies for your particular type and severity of alopecia areata.

There are a variety of treatments for both mild and severe alopecia areata — it’s important to stay informed, so you and your doctor can choose the best course for yours. Goals of therapy include stopping active hair loss and regrowing hair.

This method of treatment — the most common form of treatment for alopecia areata — uses corticosteroids that are injected into bare patches of skin with a tiny needle. These injections are repeated about every four to six weeks and are usually given by a dermatologist.

Corticosteroid injections, like all treatments for alopecia areata, do not prevent new hair loss from developing. While there are few reported side effects related to this kind of treatment, temporary depressions (called “dells”) in the skin may result from the injections. However, these usually improve with time. People may experience slight discomfort from the needle pricks and tingling from the medication, but usually there is no other pain or discomfort after leaving the dermatologist’s office.

With this form of treatment, a 5% topical minoxidil solution is applied once or twice a day to help stimulate hair on the scalp, eyebrows and beard to regrow. Two and 5% topical minoxidil solutions are available but aren’t usually effective for alopecia areata when used alone, but when applied in combination with topical corticosteroid medications, some people see improved results.

This synthetic, tar-like substance — also widely used for psoriasis — is a common form of treatment for alopecia areata. Anthralin is applied to the hairless patches once a day and then washed off typically after a short time (usually 30-60 minutes later) or in some cases, after several hours.

This form of medication may irritate the skin and cause a temporary, brownish discoloration of the skin that’s been treated. However, some patients can reduce these side effects by using anthralin for shorter periods of time, without decreasing the treatment’s effectiveness. 

In alopecia areata, corticosteroids are thought to decrease the inflammation around the hair follicle. Topical steroids can come in different brands, strengths and preparations, such as solutions, lotions, foams, creams, or ointments. 

Studies have shown that there is a reduction of hair loss when using topical steroids. In addition, improved regrowth of approximately 25% has been observed with the use of highly potent topical corticosteroids. They can be good adjunct medications especially when treating children with alopecia areata.

There are many therapies which can offer benefits for someone with alopecia areata, however there is no single option proven to work for everyone. Some people with alopecia areata may choose accessories, wigs, or cosmetic alternatives to address their hair loss, while others opt not to cover affected areas.

Healthy, young adults can usually tolerate corticosteroid pills with few side effects. However, doctors do not prescribe corticosteroid pills as often as other treatments for alopecia areata, because of the health risks and side effects associated with using them for a long period of time. It’s important to talk to your doctor about your goals for treatment and possible side effects of the medication, to be sure the benefits of using corticosteroid pills in your case are greater than the risks. As with other options, hair regrown with corticosteroid use may fall back out once treatment is stopped.

Topical immunotherapy is used to treat extensive alopecia areata, alopecia totalis and alopecia universalis. This form of treatment involves applying chemicals such as diphencyprone (DPCP), dinitrochlorobenzene (DNCB) or squaric acid dibutyl ester (SADBE) to the scalp. This causes an allergic rash (allergic contact dermatitis) that looks like poison oak or ivy, which alters the immune response.

Patients who successfully regrow scalp hair usually must continue treatment in order to maintain the regrowth. Side effects — redness, itching and a rash at the site of application — are common. Topical immunotherapy isn’t widely available and is typically performed and prescribed by dermatologists. The National Alopecia Areata Foundation can help you find a specialist who offers this treatment in the U.S.

Immunomodulatory drugs — specifically, Janus kinase (JAK) inhibitors — such as tofacitinib (Xeljanz) and ruxolitinib (Jakafi), are a new type of therapy being tested for alopecia areata. These medications were originally approved to treat certain blood disorders and rheumatoid arthritis. They are not approved by the FDA for alopecia areata yet, and are only available right now in the form of an oral medication. A topical formulation is currently in clinical trials in the United States.

Oral immunomodulators have proven to be effective at helping some patients with extensive alopecia areata regrow hair — even if they’ve had the disease (and hair loss) for many years. This has been observed in the small number of patients studied so far.

Because this is a new form of therapy, there isn’t a lot of information known about the side effects of taking this medication. Clinical trials are being done in order to evaluate the oral and topical medication’s effectiveness and safety in treating alopecia areata. 

Patients with alopecia areata, alopecia totalis and alopecia universalis can be treated based on age and severity of the condition. This algorithm outlines an approach that can be used from mild to severe forms of the disorder. There are now choices that the patient can decide on what is best for them based on efficacy, cost and side effect profile.

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Alopecia areata is a skin disorder that causes hair loss, usually in patches, most often on the scalp. Usually, the bald patches appear suddenly and affect only a limited area. The hair grows back within 12 months or less. For some people, however, the problem can last longer and be more severe, causing total baldness (alopecia totalis) or total loss of body hair (alopecia universalis).

The cause of alopecia areata is probably an autoimmune reaction. This means the body’s immune system incorrectly attacks the body’s own cells. In the case of alopecia areata, the cells under attack are in the hair follicles (structures that grow hair), especially follicles within the scalp.

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About 4.6 million people in the United States struggle with alopecia areata, an autoimmune disorder that occurs when the immune system mistakenly attacks your hair follicles and, as a result, causes hair loss on the scalp and various parts of the body.

While there is currently no cure for alopecia areata (and no medications approved for its treatment), some people turn to a range of natural treatments and remedies in an effort to control the condition.

For a report published in the American Journal of Clinical Dermatology in 2010, scientists sized up the available research on the use of complementary and alternative remedies and therapies in the treatment of alopecia areata. However, in their analysis of the 13 studies selected for the review, the authors found that no study was well-designed enough to provide “robust evidence” of the benefit of any type of complementary and/or alternative approach in the management of this condition.

A form of Panax ginseng, Korean red ginseng shows promise in the treatment of alopecia areata. In a preliminary study published in the Journal of Ginseng Research in 2012, scientists observed that Korean red ginseng may help promote hair growth in people with alopecia areata.

A number of small studies indicate that hypnosis may be beneficial for people with alopecia areata. These include a study published in the International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis in 2008, for which 28 people with alopecia areata received hypnotherapy.

Of the 21 people who completed the study, 12 participants experienced significant hair growth after undergoing hypnosis. What’s more, all study participants showed a significant decrease in anxiety and depression after receiving hypnotherapy.

A study published in the Swedish journal Acta Dermato-Venereologica in 2011 also found that hypnosis may benefit people with alopecia areata. For this study, 21 people with alopecia areata received 10 sessions of hypnosis over a six-month period. By the study’s end, participants showed improvements in several markers of psychological wellbeing, including anxiety and depression.

Applying onion juice to parts of the head or body affected by alopecia areata may help promote hair growth, according to a small study published in the Journal of Dermatology in 2002. In an experiment involving 38 people with alopecia areata, those who used an onion-juice-based treatment twice daily for two months experienced significantly more hair growth compared to those assigned to a tap-water-based treatment for the same time period.

In a small study published in Archives of Dermatology in 1998, an aromatherapy treatment involving a blend of essential oils of thyme, rosemary, lavender, and cedarwood appeared to aid in the treatment of alopecia areata for some people.

For the study, 43 people with alopecia areata massaged a combination of these essential oils and the carrier oils jojoba and grapeseed into their scalps every day for seven months. Meanwhile, a second group of 41 people with alopecia areata massaged only jojoba and grapeseed oils into their scalp each day for the same time period.

In a preliminary study published in Acupuncture in Medicine in 2013, tests on mice demonstrated that electroacupuncture may inhibit certain alopecia-related changes in skin cells. Electroacupuncture is a form of acupuncture in which needles are attached to a device that produces continuous electric impulses and then placed at specific points on the patient’s body.

Stress may play an important role in triggering episodes of alopecia areata, according to a study published in the Journal of Dermatology in 1999. Although it’s possible that practicing stress management techniques could offer some protection against episodes of alopecia areata, there’s currently a lack of studies testing the use of such techniques in alopecia areata management.

While further clinical trials are needed, certain holistic therapies or remedies may be helpful to some degree. If you’re thinking of trying any type of natural treatment for alopecia areata, make sure to consult your healthcare provider first to weigh the pros and cons and discuss whether it’s appropriate for you.

Effective treatments for some types of hair loss are available. You might be able to reverse hair loss, or at least slow further thinning. With some conditions, such as patchy hair loss (alopecia areata), hair may regrow without treatment within a year.

If your hair loss is caused by an underlying disease, treatment for that disease will be necessary. This may include drugs to reduce inflammation and suppress your immune system, such as prednisone. If a certain medication is causing the hair loss, your doctor may advise you to stop using it for at least three months.

Minoxidil (Rogaine). This is an over-the-counter (nonprescription) medication approved for men and women. It comes as a liquid or foam that you rub into your scalp daily. Wash your hands after application. At first it may cause you to shed hair. New hair may be shorter and thinner than previous hair. At least six months of treatment is required to prevent further hair loss and to start hair regrowth. You need to keep applying the medication to retain benefits.

Finasteride (Propecia). This is a prescription drug approved for men. You take it daily as a pill. Many men taking finasteride experience a slowing of hair loss, and some may show some new hair growth. You need to keep taking it to retain benefits. Finasteride may not work as well for men over 60.

Rare side effects of finasteride include diminished sex drive and sexual function and an increased risk of prostate cancer. Women who are or may be pregnant need to avoid touching crushed or broken tablets.

During a hair transplant procedure, a dermatologist or cosmetic surgeon removes tiny patches of skin, each containing one to several hairs, from the back or side of your scalp. Sometimes a larger strip of skin containing multiple hair groupings is taken. He or she then implants the hair follicle by follicle into the bald sections. Some doctors recommend using minoxidil after the transplant, to help minimize hair loss. And you may need more than one surgery to get the effect you want. Hereditary hair loss will eventually progress despite surgery.

The Food and Drug Administration has approved a low-level laser device as a treatment for hereditary hair loss in men and women. A few small studies have shown that it improves hair density. More studies are needed to show long-term effects.

You may want to try shaving, other styling techniques and products, scarves, a wig, or a hairpiece. Talk with a hair stylist for ideas. These nonmedical solutions can be used to cover permanent or temporary hair loss.

Your time with your doctor is limited, so preparing a list of questions will help you make the most of your time together. List your questions from most important to least important in case time runs out. For hair loss, some basic questions to ask your doctor include:

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Baldness caused by alopecia areata could soon be treated safely and effectively, after an international University of Melbourne-led trial found two new drugs to be safe and effective.

Until now there has been no effective treatment for the debilitating condition that causes patchy hair loss and affects up to 147 million people globally. About 15 per cent of people with the condition experience total or universal .

Professor Sinclair said new molecules used in the trial drugs had also been tested for atopic dermatitis, but this was the first trial conducted in alopecia. He said the latest results were potentially life-changing for those living with alopecia.

“This is a game changer,” he said. “Both compounds performed significantly better than placebo in patients with alopecia totalis and alopecia universalis. Both JAK inhibitors were safe and well tolerated.”

“Other medications that target this pathway have been used to treat rheumatoid arthritis and to correct blood disorders,” he said. “Some of these drugs also work in eczema, psoriasis and a range of other inflammatory and autoimmune conditions.”

Professor Sinclair said several patients in the trial experienced adverse events, including infections, gastrointestinal and skin/subcutaneous tissue issues. Two experienced a serious adverse event (rhabdomyolysis) but the patients were asymptomatic and recovered completely when the medication was ceased. There were no serious infections or herpes zoster reactivation.

The trials involve clinics and universities in Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland, Manitoba, Ontario, Alabama, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts, New York, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Utah and Virginia.

Autoimmune diseases, allergies, and even malignancies are often due to a persistent imbalance within complex immune mechanisms. The actions of several cytokines underlie these complex processes, as they play a critical role in the control of the immune responses and inflammatory processes.

Several studies have linked various cytokines, and the receptors or molecules involved in their chemical reactions, to immune-mediated and inflammatory diseases. Therefore, cytokine function modulation has been the focus of intensive research and drug development. Drugs targeting cytokines or their receptors have become the main weapon of physicians dealing with such as areata.

The four JAKs (JAK1, 2, 3 and TYK2) have been shown to be critical components of cytokine-mediated effects.

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Qigong is a part of traditional Chinese medicine. According to the antique treaties, the foundations of traditional Chinese medicine are based in maintaining the harmony between Qi (energy), Jing (essence) and Shen (spirit). Alterations in this harmony can develop and determine the appearance of disease. Therapeutic effects of Qigong are helpful in the prevention and treatment of several diseases. It’s main role in restoring body functions is due to the communication between internal organs, tissues and cells. The main goal of this work is to show the efficacy of Qigong in the treatment of a dermatological disease characterized by the appearance of circular or oval patches of missing hair, known as alopecia universalis. For western medicine the exact cause of this illness is not totally revealed, however, it’s attributed to psycological, genetics and metabolic alterations. From the traditional Chinese medicine perspective, hair alterations are framed in the area of the water energy, represented by the kidney organ. The results of Qigong treatment suggested that the cranial hair follicles had been activated since the first treatment. As treatment progressed, the cranial hair follicles continued to grow, what’s more, the brightness and pigmentation of the hair also increased. Therefore, in the clinical conditions evaluated, Qigong could be an effective alternative treatment in consideration of the visible evidence about rapid and long lasting results. Besides, we did not observe any side effects of Qigong in this case.

Gómez Jensen Alberto Alejandro, Martínez Diana Elina, Wan Qing Guo. Efficacy of Qigong for the treatment of alopecia universalis:a clinical case report. 90Life Research, 2019, 2(1): 8-13.