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Year : 2012  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 3-6

Alopecia in lupus: Experience from a tertiary referral centre

1 Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, North Bengal Medical College, Darjeeling, India
2 Clinical Tutor, ID & BG Hospital, Kolkata - 700010, West Bengal, India

Correspondence Address:
Alakes Kumar Kole
Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, North Bengal Medical College, Darjeeling
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.1016/S0973-3698(12)60002-8

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Background: Alopecia is a non-specific cutaneous manifestation of lupus and seen in 45-54% of lupus patients at any time during the disease process. Lupus and alopecia often go hand in hand and produce significant psychoso- cial impact. Objectives: To study the different patterns of alopecia in lupus, relationship to disease activity and its psychosocial impact. Methods: Lupus patients attending the Rheumatology and Dermatology Clinics in the North Bengal Medical College and Hospital were evaluated with special reference to different patterns of alopecia, relationship with disease activity and its impact on lifestyle. Results: A total of 50 lupus patients were studied. Forty patients had alopecia during the study period, whereas 10 patients had alopecia at the time of presentation. Different patterns of alopecia observed were telogen effluvium in 20 cases, 'lupus hair' in 10 cases, scarring alopecia (associated with discoid lesions) in seven and alopecia areata in five cases, but alopecia totalis was not detected. 'Lupus hair' was associated with high disease activity and 15 patients had impaired quality of life because of recurrent alopecia and scarring. Conclusion: Alopecia is a less serious disease manifestation in lupus, though it can produce a significant psycho- social impact in the quality of life.

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