The spectrum of pediatric scarring alopecia: A retrospective review of 27 patients seen at Mayo Clinic

Reese L. Imhof, Hafsa M. Cantwell, Sydney L. Proffer, Stanislav N. Tolkachjov, Rochelle R. Torgerson, Megha M. Tollefson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background/Objective: There are few studies examining pediatric scarring alopecia. The objective of this study is to characterize the clinicopathologic findings, comorbidities, and treatment outcomes of pediatric patients with scarring alopecia. Methods: Retrospective review of patients under age 18 diagnosed with scarring alopecia at Mayo Clinic from 01/01/1992 through 02/05/2019. Results: 27 patients met inclusion criteria with a mean age of 11.2 years and a racial breakdown of 85.2% (23) White, 11.1% (3) Black, and 3.7% (1) Multiracial. Clinical scarring was noted in most (23, 85.2%). Biopsy confirmed the diagnosis in most (24, 88.9%). The most common diagnoses were folliculitis decalvans (6, 22.2%), lichen planopilaris (6, 22.2%), aplasia cutis congenita (4, 14.8%), tinea capitis (4, 14.8%), and morphea (3, 11.1%). Comorbid depression (6, 22.2%) and anxiety (6, 22.2%) were prevalent. Of the patients who received follow-up, most who pursued treatment achieved stabilization (55.5%) or slowing of progression (27.8%), with 44.4% of those treated experiencing regrowth. Mean time to stabilization in the treated population was 19.6 months. Two patients did not pursue treatment, but received follow-up and these untreated patients did not experience hair regrowth. Conclusions: Most patients presented with clinically evident primary scarring alopecia. Biopsy may confirm the diagnosis. Active treatment should be pursued, and successful treatment often requires combination therapies. Time to stabilization often takes years. Screening for depression and anxiety should be pursued.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)580-584
Number of pages5
JournalPediatric Dermatology
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1 2021


  • alopecia
  • hair disorders
  • hair loss
  • pediatric dermatology
  • scarring alopecia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Dermatology


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