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J Am Acad Dermatol. 2006 Aug;55(2):233-7. Epub 2006 Mar 20.

Hypnotherapeutic management of alopecia areata.

Author information

  • 1Department of Dermatology, Academic Hospital, Free University (VUB), Brussels. riawil@scarlet.be

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Only limited data exist on the role of psychotherapy in alopecia areata (AA).

OBJECTIVE:

We sought to document the influence of hypnotherapy on psychologic well-being and clinical outcome in AA.

METHODS:

Hypnosis was used in 28 patients with extensive AA who were refractory to previous conventional treatments. It was added as a complementary treatment or used as the only treatment.

RESULTS:

In all, 21 patients, 9 with alopecia totalis or alopecia universalis and 12 with extensive AA, were analyzed during a 5-year period. After treatment, all patients had a significantly lower score for anxiety and depression. Scalp hair growth of 75% to 100% was seen in 12 patients after 3 to 8 sessions of hypnotherapy. Total growth occurred in 9 of these 12 patients, including 4 patients with alopecia universalis and 2 with ophiasis. In 5 patients, a significant relapse occurred.

LIMITATIONS:

This is a preliminary study with a limited number of patients. A larger randomized study is necessary.

CONCLUSION:

Hypnotherapy may enhance the mental well-being of patients with AA and it may improve clinical outcome.

PMID:
16844504
DOI:
10.1016/j.jaad.2005.09.025
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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