Lichen planopilaris is a type of scarring hair loss. In this post, you will read more about the symptoms, cause and possible solutions.
With lichen planopilaris, not only do you suffer from bald spots on your scalp, but you also have redness, itchiness, flaking and, in some cases, pain. The hair loss usually starts off with a small spot on the top of your head, which can slowly get bigger. Lichen planopilaris mostly affects women who are between 40 and 60 years old, but men can get it too.
The cause of this type of hair loss is that your immune system attacks your hair follicles at the level of the stem cells. This results in an inflammatory response. The stem cells are the ‘memory’ of your hair, and they are usually responsible for ensuring that new hair is created when the old one falls out. But with lichen planopilaris, the stem cells are destroyed. The hairs that have fallen out will therefore not grow back.
There are medications that can stop or slow down the hair loss process, but they don’t always (or only temporarily) work. These medications also suppress your immune system, so that can also have an effect on your health.