SkinCare in Wellesley, MA

Alopecia can be a frustrating condition causing hair loss. Dr. Rashel Goodkin is an expert dermatologist with years of experience in diagnosing and treating alopecia. Patients can slow hair loss and regrow hair through an effective treatment plan from Dr. Goodkin.

What is Alopecia Areata?

Alopecia is a condition in which the hair is lost, with patients experiencing varying degrees of noticeable thinning or baldness. Alopecia can occur virtually anywhere on the body, including the scalp, eyebrows, or eyelashes. Patients may experience different types of alopecia, including:

  • Alopecia areata, or patchy hair loss
  • Alopecia totalis, or a complete loss of hair from the scalp
  • Alopecia universalis, or a complete loss of all body hair
  • Diffuse alopecia areata, which looks similar to male-pattern or female-pattern baldness
  • Ophiasis alopecia, or hair loss in a band pattern around the sides and back of the scalp

There is no cure for alopecia, but treatment can help slow or prevent future hair loss and encourage hair to grow back.

Causes of Alopecia Areata

Alopecia is caused by the immune system attacking hair follicles by mistaking healthy cells for a foreign substance. This stops hair follicles from producing hair and causes them to shrink. Alopecia can sometimes be genetic.

Alopecia Areata Diagnosis

Dr. Goodkin will complete an alopecia diagnosis by carefully examining your hair and nails, but may also require blood tests or other tests to rule out other causes for hair loss and confirm a diagnosis. There are many other kinds of alopecia (hair loss) that need to be differentiated from alopecia areata. After receiving an alopecia diagnosis, treatment will be recommended depending on your specific symptoms and how they affect your life.

Treatment Options for Alopecia Areata

To treat alopecia, Dr. Goodkin may recommend topical treatments, laser light treatments, oral medications, or injections.

Topical treatments include minoxidil, also known as Rogaine, which is applied twice daily to the affected area. Drugs such as anthralin or other immunotherapy can also be used to irritate the scalp, stimulating new hair growth. Finally, Dr. Goodkin may recommend a corticosteroid cream, foam, or ointment and other topical medications.

Steroids can also be injected into areas of thinning or balding to help regrow lost hair.

Laser treatments which deliver a special kind of ultraviolet light can also be used.

Finally, oral medications such as cortisone tablets or immunosuppressants may be prescribed to help patients with more advanced alopecia.

Dr. Goodkin will evaluate your hair loss and determine a treatment plan that will be most effective for you.

Schedule an Appointment

To schedule an appointment with Dr. Goodkin, call our Boston office at 781.227.7977 or request an appointment through our online form.