Which medications are most commonly used to treat alopecia areata?

Updated: Jun 07, 2018
  • Author: Chantal Bolduc, MD, FRCPC; Chief Editor: Dirk M Elston, MD  more...
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Answer

Therapies most commonly include corticosteroid injections, corticosteroid creams, minoxidil, anthralin, topical immunotherapy, and phototherapy. The choice of one agent over the others depends on patient age (children do not always tolerate adverse effects), extent of condition (localized vs extensive), and the patient's personal preference. The University of California (San Francisco) and University of British Columbia have devised a treatment algorithm that can guide the physician in the treatment of alopecia areata (see image below).

Treatment algorithm for alopecia areata. Treatment algorithm for alopecia areata.

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