What is the role of biopsy in the diagnosis of androgenetic alopecia?

Updated: Feb 12, 2018
  • Author: Robert P Feinstein, MD; Chief Editor: Romesh Khardori, MD, PhD, FACP  more...
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Answer

A biopsy is rarely necessary to make the diagnosis of androgenetic alopecia. If a single biopsy specimen is obtained, it should generally be sectioned transversely if pattern alopecia is suspected.

In androgenetic alopecia, hairs are miniaturized. Although the condition is considered a noninflammatory form of hair loss, a superficial, perifollicular, inflammatory infiltrate is noted at times. A mildly increased telogen-to-anagen ratio is often observed.

See Workup for more detail.


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