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Int J Dermatol. 1994 Dec;33(12):849-50.

Alopecia areata and increased prevalence of psychiatric disorders.

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Department of Dermatology, University of California at San Francisco Medical Center.



The relationship between psychiatric disorders and alopecia areata has not been well studied. Although previous reports have been unable to correlate psychiatric illness with hair loss, a recent study determined that 74% of patients with alopecia areata (AA) under evaluation had one or more lifetime psychiatric diagnoses.


Two hundred and ninety-four community-based patients with alopecia areata responded to a detailed questionnaire distributed by Help Alopecia International Research, Inc. The prevalence of psychiatric disorders was determined using diagnostic criteria from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IIIR).


Major depression, generalized anxiety disorder, social phobia, and paranoid disorder were all present in patients with alopecia areata at rates significantly higher than in the general population.


Alopecia areata patients are at a higher risk of developing psychiatric comorbidity during their clinical course.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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