Frontal fibrosing alopecia: a review of eleven patients

Iolanda Conde Fernandes, Manuela Selores, Susana Machado
European Journal of Dermatology: EJD 2011, 21 (5): 750-2

BACKGROUND: Frontal fibrosing alopecia (FFA) is a primary lymphocytic cicatricial alopecia with a distinctive clinical pattern of progressive frontotemporal hairline recession.

OBJECTIVES: Our purpose was to describe the clinical and histopathological features as well as the response to treatment of eleven cases of FFA diagnosed at the Trichology Consultation, over three years.

METHODS: A retrospective case note review was performed of eleven adult patients with FFA. The clinical data as well the histopathologic findings and laboratory tests were accessed. The patients were treated with different drugs, depending on the stage of the disease. The age of onset of the alopecia ranged from 45 to 80 years. Ten patients (90.9%) were postmenopausal women. All patients had progressive and symmetrical alopecia localized to the frontal and temporal hairline. Seven patients (63.6%) had marked decreased to complete loss of eyebrows and in four patients axillar alopecia was also evident. Laboratory investigations were normal. Scalp biopsy specimens from the anterior hairline showed similar findings. No significant improvement was observed in the majority of cases.

CONCLUSION: Differential diagnosis should take into account several other conditions. It seems there is no effective treatment proven with an appropriate level of evidence in the management of FFA.

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