Vellus hairs in the frontal scalp in early female pattern hair loss

Ingrid Herskovitz, Isabel Cristina Vd de Sousa, Antonella Tosti
International Journal of Trichology 2013, 5 (3): 118-20

BACKGROUND: Dermoscopy of the scalp (trichoscopy) is a technique to evaluate the skin of the scalp and the hair disorders. It clinically helps to establish early female pattern hair loss (FPHL) without the need for more invasive techniques.

OBJECTIVES: This work intends to demonstrate new adjunct criteria for the clinical diagnosis of FPHL by determining the number of short vellus hairs encountered in the frontal area of the scalp of female patients with FPHL.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: We retrospectively reviewed the trichoscopy images from 45 women affected by FPHL in initial stages, at 20 fold magnification dermoscopy at 2 cm from the hairline into the frontal area of the scalp.

RESULTS: A total of 45 patients images included had more than 20% variability at dermoscopy, criteria utilized to diagnose and included them in the study. All patients were graded as Ludwig I severity, 14 patients had frontal accentuation. The average number of vellus hairs in the frontal area at 20-fold magnification of all patients was of 12.02 vellus hair in the frontal area. When comparing the Ludwid I pattern group versus the Ludwig I with frontal accentuation pattern group there was no statistical difference between the two clinical groups.

CONCLUSIONS: All 45 patients analyzed in this study were clinically diagnosed with FPHL. The number of vellus hairs in the frontal area was greater than the average found in normal subjects. Most patients (80%) with FPHL had more than or equal to seven vellus hairs per 20-fold magnification field in the frontal area, therefore we suggest that the presence of more than 6 vellus hairs in the frontal scalp at 20-fold magnification can be used as an additional criterion of FPHL.

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