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Lupus: Can it cause hair loss?By Mayo Clinic staff
Original Article: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/lupus/AN01876
- With Mayo Clinic rheumatologist
April Chang-Miller, M.D.read biographyclose window
April Chang-Miller, M.D.April Chang-Miller, M.D.
Dr. April Chang-Miller is board certified in internal medicine and rheumatology and is a consultant in the Division of Rheumatology at Mayo Clinic in Arizona.
Dr. Chang-Miller's primary field is rheumatology with special interests in inflammatory joint diseases called seronegative spondyloarthropathies, such as ankylosing spondylitis and psoriatic arthritis. She also cares for patients with rheumatoid arthritis and polymyalgia rheumatica.
The New York City native is a graduate of the Yale School of Medicine. Dr. Chang-Miller joined the Mayo Clinic staff in Rochester, Minn., in 1991, and in 2002 she relocated to Mayo Clinic in Arizona. She is a fellow in the American College of Rheumatology and has been on the board of directors of the Arthritis Foundation North Central Chapter.
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Lupus: Can it cause hair loss?
Can lupus cause hair loss?
from April Chang-Miller, M.D.
Unfortunately, yes. Lupus causes widespread inflammation that usually involves your skin — particularly on your face and scalp. Lupus can cause the hair on your scalp to gradually thin out, although a few people lose clumps of hair. Loss of eyebrow, eyelash, beard and body hair also is possible.
In most cases, your hair will grow back when your lupus is treated. But some people with lupus develop round (discoid) lesions on the scalp. Because these discoid lesions scar your hair follicles, they do cause permanent hair loss.
Lupus can also cause the scalp hair along your hairline to become fragile and break off easily, leaving you with a ragged appearance known as lupus hair.
Hair loss may be an early sign of lupus, before the disease is diagnosed. But many other disorders can cause hair loss, so consult with your doctor if you notice unusual hair thinning or hair loss.Next question
Lupus: Can it cause hives?
- Schur PH, et al. Mucocutaneous manifestations of systemic lupus erythematosus. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed Sept. 24, 2012.
- How lupus affects the body: The skin. Lupus Foundation of America. http://www.lupus.org/webmodules/webarticlesnet/templates/new_learnaffects.aspx?articleid=2324&zoneid=526. Accessed Sept. 24, 2012.
- Habif TP. Clinical Dermatology: A Color Guide to Diagnosis and Therapy. 5th ed. Edinburgh, U.K.; New York, N.Y.: Mosby Elsevier; 2010. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-7234-3541-9..X0001-6--TOP&isbn=978-0-7234-3541-9&uniqId=230100505-57. Accessed Sept 24, 2012.