Hair follicles can at times be attacked by an autoimmune disease called alopecia areata. It is a genetically conditioned disease that “comes out” in some people at birth. The reason why it comes out in some people leaving others still remains to be a mystery.
Alopecia areata patients are not common candidates for hair transplantation. In hair transplantation, hair follicles are moved from normal areas of the scalp to the bald area. The hair follicles that have been moved to the bald area remain susceptible to being attacked by the patient’s immune system.
How long does the autoimmune attack to occur?
The attack can occur just 2 months after the transplant or up to 50 years after a transplant. There is no definite duration known for the autoimmune attack to occur. It is all dependent on the patient’s body immune system
This is why you will need to consult your doctor first before going for the transplant. The doctor will be in a good position to offer advice on what should be done in regards to this condition.
How about patients with small stubborn spots of alopecia areata?
For patients with small stubborn spots of alopecia areata, there are other treatment options that can be offered. On doctor’s advice, such a patient may be treated with steroids injections. There are other treatment options such as diphencyprone, anthralin that can be used.
Is there hope patients with ‘long standing’ alopecia areata?
Though it seems impossible to perform hair transplantation to patients with ‘long standing’ alopecia areata, there have been successful surgeries done on such patients. With the successful outcomes recorded in Turkey, it can be said that there is hope for alopecia areata patients who want to undergo hair transplantation.
Visiting your doctor to assess your condition is the first and most important steps to getting hair transplantation even when you have alopecia areata.