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12 month update: good and bad news

Discussion in 'Women's Alopecia Areata' started by AmyCE, Feb 23, 2013.

  1. AmyCE

    AmyCE Established Member

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    Well, the good news: I'm pregnant! The bad news: I have four new bald spots. :eek: Three seem to be growing back in (unless the nubby little hairs I'm feeling/seeing are the broken border hairs...really can't tell the difference).

    I've been reading about Alopecia Areata in pregnancy and it seems it can go either way: either the hormones put you in Alopecia Areata remission or aggravate the hell out of it. Sadly, I appear to be in the latter group.

    I've been tracking this for weeks and I don't think the existing spots are getting bigger but I am still getting new ones. I haven't gone back to the dermatologist (I would normally go running for injections the second I find a spot) because I assume my previous course of treatment (injections + topical steroid) are off-limits to me now. Obviously the pregnancy is more important to me than my hair but it doesn't stop me from wanting to do something about it. Does anyone know of any Alopecia Areata treatment that is considered safe during pregnancy? When I met with my OB before conceiving to go over the medications I was on, she implied the injections didn't go far enough to enter the bloodstream and that the topical steroid (even though very strong) also wasn't likely to be absorbed. But I want to be cautious and at least until I'm further along, avoid Class C treatments with iffy effects. Thoughts?
     
  2. dancer

    dancer Experienced Member

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    Congratulations on the pregnancy! :eek: sorry to hear that the hair is not doing as well but hopefully things will settled down once your little bundle of joy has arrived. Keep well and take care of yourself!

    Sara x
     
  3. baker mom

    baker mom Guest

    Congratulations! :)
     
  4. AmyCE

    AmyCE Established Member

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    Thanks Sara and baker mom! Update: according to my primary care doctor, my OB, and my dermatologist, Kenalog injections and Clobestasol are fine during pregnancy. I'm still skeptical because of the Class C warning but I suppose if very specific studies on pregnant women are not done, the literature needs to err on the side of caution. It's a tough decision though.
     
  5. Joann

    Joann Moderator

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    Congratulations on your pregnancy Amy!!! :) Sorry that the Alopecia Areata seems to have picked up a bit. I was one of the fortunate ones who never had better hair than when I was pregnant. So strange how we are all different with the Alopecia Areata and pregnancy. I have a friend who was Alopecia Universalis at 14. Since that time she has only regrown hair when pregnant with her children. Shortly after giving birth to each of her 2 children it all fell out again.

    I do have Alopecia Areata friends whose derms did not want to treat their Alopecia Areata during their pregnancies. Yet all 3 of your doctors think it's fine to treat your Alopecia Areata with injections or Clobestasol during your pregnancy. There's definitely differing opinions out there in the medical
    profession.

    I attended a session in my Toronto support group where I listened to a derm who specializes in Alopecia Areata that uses pulse therapy when treating children with topical steroids. He mentioned the absorption concern for them and that's why the pulse therapy. This could be something to consider if you aren't totally comfortable with treating more aggressively because of the baby.

    It's a hard decision and one only you can make.

    Hugs,
    Joann
     
  6. AmyCE

    AmyCE Established Member

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    Thanks Joann! I'm hoping that the rest of my pregnancy will give me an Alopecia Areata break, as I've read that this is more common. (And then of course I'm prepared for it to all fall out again after I give birth!)

    I ended up getting a few injections (my derm was worried that the spots near my hairline were expanding) and I'm going to skip the Clobetasol. I think that will be it until the baby comes so new spots will just have to try to go away on their own. I'm already using steroids for asthma, sinusitis and eczema so there's concern for that too. I've tried tapering off as much as I can to keep my conditions under control but since my hair loss is only cosmetic, this is where I can make the biggest cut. There is so much conflicting information out there and it's so stressful to know if you're doing the right thing.
     
  7. Joann

    Joann Moderator

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    Hi Amy,


    Glad to hear you made a decision that you feel good about. I also hope that the Alopecia Areata settles down as your pregnancy progresses.

    We had a young woman here awhile ago who developed the patches with her 3rd pregnancy. She didn't do any treatment . The Alopecia Areata did progress but she also had Graves disease that needed to be brought under control.

    She sent me PMs because she was really worried all her hair would go. It didn't. All her patches filled in and though she got new ones for awhile within a year that was it. She hasn't been back for awhile now so I'm assuming she's still in full remission.

    Her's is not the only postive Alopecia Areata & pregnancy story I've heard. I heard many, many more positive ones and in most of those cases no treatment was done.

    Keep in touch.

    :grouphug: Joann
     
  8. AmyCE

    AmyCE Established Member

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    Thanks for that story Joann--it really helps! I decided that no amount of second-guessing myself is worth it so I won't pursue additional treatments unless it's really affecting my mental health (and my OB continues to give the OK). So far, I can deal with what hair I've lost and I'll keep my fingers crossed that I follow suit with other women and have a nice break from Alopecia Areata for the rest of my pregnancy. :)
     
  9. Alopecia Areata

    Hello everyone, I was recently diagnosed with diffuse Alopecia Areata. I am losing hair all over including my eyelashes and eyebrows. I also have 2 small bald spots in the front. The dr never did a biopsy but he's sure this is what I have. I'm so afraid I am going to lose all of the hair because the rest of my hair on my body isn't growing either. I'm just having such a hard time coping. I've been reading all your posts and everyone seems so strong. I need strength.
     
  10. dancer

    dancer Experienced Member

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    Hi workingthezen :)

    Sorry to hear of your Alopecia Areata, it takes time to come to terms with hair loss and even though I have accepted it I can still have bad days, they are rare now but they do happen! My advise is to take one day at a time no one can predict how things will turnout . For me finding a good wig and some of the eyebow products make me feel ok about the whole darn situation.

    Are you having any treatments?

    Wishing you all the luck that this turns around for you
     
  11. New diagnosis

    Hi Dancer, so I went to the Mayo Clinic and the dr there said he doesn't think it's alopecia. He thinks I have TE?!? It's so confusing. I haven't done any treatments except 2 shots at the last dr. The doctor at the mayo said it will grow soon and not to worry?! The hair isn't growing anywhere on my body? My iron is low and I am having IV iron treatment next week. What do you think about this? What's going on with your hair now?
     
  12. dancer

    dancer Experienced Member

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    I really don't much about TE only what I read on here, but I believe it is suppose to right itself and that obviously varies from person to person how long that takes, I think like it all hair loss is it a waiting game to see what happens. Have you had a biopsy done, although not always conclusive it may help to know what is causing your problems. Hopefully the treatment for iron will help your situation.I think anything that is out of sink can play havoc with our bodies

    Oh I am Alopecia Universalis so I don't have any hair at all! Next month will be 37 years since I started with Alopecia Areata, but I am ok with it, life is still good without hair!:)
     

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