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People with Alopecia Areata Report a Wide Range of Physical Symptoms

June 9th, 2021

As an autoimmune disease in which the body mistakenly attacks the hair follicles, alopecia areata is most recognized for causing unpredictable hair loss, partial or complete, on the scalp and body. However, the disease causes a range of other physical symptoms as well. These additional physical symptoms can have a significant impact on daily living with alopecia areata.

People with alopecia areata have reported a range of physical symptoms and complications, affecting different areas of the body:

Eyes
  • Increased sensitivity to light
  • Dryness and irritation
  • Inability to keep sweat or water out of eyes
  • Debris in the eyes
Nose
  • Dryness and irritation
  • Frequent illness and infections
  • Frequent running nose/sneezing
  • Breathing issues
Nails
  • Splitting
  • Discoloration
  • Sensitivity
  • Difficulty with grasping and fine motor tasks
Scalp
  • Skin sensitivity
  • Trouble regulating temperature
  • Increased sensitivity to temperature
  • Increased susceptibility to sunburn

These findings are from a study published in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology Symposium Proceedings . The publication, based on a survey of 216 people with alopecia areata for a median of 13 years, was conducted by the National Alopecia Areata Foundation (NAAF). Concert Pharmaceuticals provided funding to sponsor the research.

The study highlighted both the physical and psychosocial symptoms of alopecia areata. We will address psychosocial impacts in a future Summer Series blog.

Concert envisions a whole new future for alopecia areata patients, and we are proud to be developing a potential new treatment for this disease that could help make this future a reality. Until then, we’ll continue to work to raise awareness of the challenges and impact faced by people with alopecia areata. Follow this blog and our social channels, @ConcertPharma and LinkedIn, for upcoming “Learn the Whole Story” updates.

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