Alopecia barbae is a form of alopecia areata, which is a kind of patchy hair loss, or hair thinning. According to Hairlosstalk.com, in western countries, about 1 per cent of women and 2 per cent of men suffer from a variety of alopecia areata . Although, this form of alopecia only affects men.
Alopecia barbae is defined as hair loss from the beard. This form of alopecia is considered to be a cosmetic disorder, which bothers the sufferer more psychologically than anything. The onset is usually gradual and treatable. However, in cases where the skin is badly damaged and has caused damage to the follicles (cicatricial alopecia), hair regrowth is not possible.
As a first option for mild cases of alopecia barbae, you will be prescribed corticosteroid cream or ointment, which is applied directly to the patches affected. Corticosteroid creams and ointments are also used for the treatment of eczema, dermatitis and psoriasis. This medication works to stop further hair loss and promote hair growth, although it may take a considerable amount of time to notice a difference.
Another treatment for alopecia barbae would be cortisone injections. Theses injections are administered to the direct bald patch, just under the skin. The medication is injected with a very small needle in multiple parts of the bald-patches. These injections are meant to stimulate hair growth and are not used as a prevention method. They are not self-administered and have to be given by a physician or dermatologist once a month.
Minoxidil Topical Treatment
Topical minoxidil (5 per cent solution) is applied to the affected patches twice a day for hair regrowth. Once the hair regrows the treatment can be stopped. Minoxidil 2 per cent, which is also used for hair growth, is not as affective on its own. According to the National Alopecia Areata Foundation, application of minoxidil 2 per cent should be followed up with cortisone cream 30 minutes later for a better response. This treatment will not work if there is 100-percent hair loss. Minoxidil is sold over the counter as Rogaine.
There are no FDA-approved treatments that exist for alopecia barbae. While the above treatments prove very effective in treating alopecia barbae, the correct dosage should never be adjusted without your physician's consent, as it may cause adverse reactions, and even further hair loss. Ask your physician before trying any new hair regrowth regimens. As some may complicate pre-existing medical conditions.