Cicatricial alopecia, also known as scarring alopecia, is a condition where hair follicles are replaced with scar tissue. fortunately, the scarring does not occur on the outer level of the skin, but under the scalp. This alleviates the pain of disfigurement, but if the disease is severe it can cause the scalp to look smooth and shiny.
In this condition, the body’s immune cells attack the skin and hair follicles, such as in autoimmune diseases. This disorder can mimic non-scarring alopecia with its patches that often spread and grow. Since cicatricial alopecia is difficult to diagnose, it is necessary to seek out a medical professional in this area. However, let’s look at how doctors review the different aspects of this affliction:
onset of the disease:
Like most diseases, cicatricial alopecia distinctly expresses various stages of development where the skin changes accordingly, while other facets of the problem may impact the entire body. Therefore, the skill of a dermatologist is needed to correctly diagnose and give a prognosis for the client.
most often there is a genetic link to this condition. If a family member has developed it, it is more likely that another member will also experience it.
The skin usually becomes dull and hard or stiff as opposed to having a healthy sheen and texture. In some cases the patient may present weeping skin whereby the skin is moist. Others have dry, crusty skin, normal skin, or fine thin skin. It’s easy to see why this condition requires a certified professional for diagnosis and treatment. to make matters even more complex, the skin surrounding an affected area can be in perfect health.
In cicatricial alopecia, hair follicles are destroyed and replaced with scar tissue. But experts have classified the condition into two types: primary and secondary. In primary scarring alopecia, the disease impacts the hair follicle directly, such as in lichen planopilaris (see below) – one of the six primary causes. In secondary scarring alopecia, the follicles are challenged indirectly such as in damage from radioactivity or a physical injury to the scalp, like burning.
A scalp biopsy is needed to determine if a condition is non-scarring or permanent scarring. Determining the exact type of loss can be difficult. That’s why it’s so important to remember that when abnormal (non-pattern) hair loss is experienced, it’s vital to consult a professional.