Roughly how many patients do you have diagnosed with Alopecia Areata?
I have been in practice for over 30 years and have treated over 1,000 patients with Alopecia.
What treatments do you prescribe/administer frequently?
Topical steroids, intralesional steroids, systemic steroids, as well as immune suppressors such as cyclosporine. We have also used Excimer Laser for localized areas of hair loss, and topical Antholion.
Have you seen/heard of new treatments you’d like to consider in the future?
Oral and topical Tofacitinib is a janus kinase inhibitor, which has been approved to treat rheumatoid arthritis. It has also been shown to be effective in the treatment of alopecia areata. The difficulty is getting insurance companies to pay for it. But it shows some promise in the future treatment of this disease.
What are the common misconceptions you have found with patients and families regarding Alopecia?
It is important to have an accurate diagnosis. Alopecia is an umbrella term only. There are many types of alopecia, of which alopecia areata is but one type. It is important to have an accurate diagnosis from a board-certified dermatologist.
Should people diagnosed not seeking treatments still see a dermatologist?
It is important to understand that alopecia areata is an autoimmune disease involving the hair follicles, and it may have a chronic relapsing course. It is important that patients understand that there are many treatments, but there are also treatments which are not effective that patients seek in desperation. Since alopecia areata is an autoimmune disease it is important to screen for other autoimmune diseases, which may also present including Hashimoto’s, Thyroiditis, among others.
Do you have any advice/thoughts you’d like to share with people diagnosed with Alopecia?
I always refer to this condition by its correct name, which is alopecia areata, although it sometimes involves the entire scalp, in which case we refer to it as alopecia totalis and alopecia universalis if all hair-bearing areas are affected. There are usually support groups in every city for people with alopecia areata. All age groups can be affected. Many times patients will have spontaneous regrowth of the hair and some will respond to treatments.
Dr. Christopher Crotty
7335 W. Sand Lake Rd.
Orlando, FL 32819
For more information regarding Dr. Crotty visit their website here