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Int J Trichology. 2018 Nov-Dec;10(6):271-274. doi: 10.4103/ijt.ijt_93_18.

The Impact of Alopecia Areata on Sexual Quality of Life.

Author information

Department of Dermatology, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, MA, USA.
Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.
Health Sciences Division, Loyola University, Chicago, IL, USA.



Alopecia areata (AA) is an autoimmune disease characterized by patches of hair loss that can cause decreased quality of life. This study evaluates the sexual quality of life for patients with AA.


We surveyed patients in the National Alopecia Areata Foundation patient registry using an online version of the validated Sexual Quality of Life for Females (SQOL-F) and Sexual Quality of Life for Males (SQOL-M) questionnaires.

Main Outcome Measures:

Patient sexual quality of life was measured using the SQOL-F and SQOL-M instruments.


Eighty-one participants with AA (64 females and 17 males) completed the surveys. The mean age was 39.7 ± 13.8 years for women and 37.4 ± 9.9 years for men. Women had a decreased sexual quality of life with mean SQOL-F score of 51.3 ± 22.9. Men had a decreased sexual quality of life with mean SQOL-M score of 62.7 ± 33.9 (higher scores indicate greater sexual quality of life). No statistical difference was found between these two cohorts (P = 0.12). In discussing negative aspects of their sexuality, women strongly identified with emotional statements such as "I feel embarrassed" (n = 48, 75.0%) while men strongly identified with emotional statements such as "I feel anxious" (n = 7, 46.7%). Both cohorts strongly identified with "I feel like I have lost something" (n = 48, 76.2% and n = 7, 43.8%, respectively).


This study demonstrates that AA has a negative impact on the patient's sexual quality of life.


Alopecia; alopecia areata; hair loss; sexual quality of life

Conflict of interest statement

Drs. Huang and Mostaghimi have received royalty payments from Pfizer for licensing of the ALTO tool and have participated in clinical trials related to alopecia from Incyte and Aclaris. In addition, Dr. Mostaghimi has received consulting fee from Pfizer.

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