Fast Five Quiz: Hair Loss (Alopecia)

William James, MD


August 01, 2022

Telogen effluvium is a form of nonscarring alopecia characterized by diffuse hair shedding, often with an acute onset. Medications are a known cause. The most frequency cited are beta-blockers, anticoagulants, retinoids (including excess vitamin A), propylthiouracil (induces hypothyroidism), carbamazepine, and immunizations. Other causes include:

  • Acute illness such as febrile illness, severe infection, major surgery, and severe trauma

  • Hormonal changes (eg, pregnancy and delivery), hypothyroidism, and discontinuation of estrogen-containing medications

  • Changes in diet (eg, crash dieting, anorexia, low protein intake, chronic iron deficiency)

  • Allergic contact dermatitis of the scalp

  • Psychological stress

Learn more about telogen effluvium.


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