…loss. “I’m getting steroid injections, which seem to be helping but not curing. But I’m open to other ideas,” she posted on her Instagram.
One type of steroid injection Pinkett Smith may be using is called Corticosteroid Injections. This method of treatment — the most common form of treatment for alopecia areata — uses corticosteroids that are injected into bare patches of skin with a tiny needle. These injections are repeated about every four to six weeks and are usually given by a dermatologist.
If new hair growth occurs from corticosteroid injections it is usually visible within four weeks. There are few known side effects related to this kind of treatment. But a drawback of corticosteroid injections, like all treatments for alopecia areata, is that they do not prevent new hair loss from developing.
Alopecia is defined as loss of hair from the body. Hair loss is often a cause of great concern to the patient for cosmetic and psychological reasons, but it can also be an important sign of systemic disease.
Alopecia areata, also known as spot baldness, is a condition in which hair is lost from some or all areas of the body. Often it results in a few bald spots on the scalp, each about the size of a coin. Psychological stress may result. People are generally otherwise healthy. In some, all the hair on the scalp or all body hair is lost and loss can be permanent.
Alopecia areata is believed to be an autoimmune disease. Risk factors include a family history of the condition. The underlying mechanism involves failure by the body to recognize its own cells with subsequent immune-mediated destruction of the hair follicle.
The actress recalled the “terrifying” moment she first noticed she was losing “handfuls of hair” in the shower.
“It was one of those times in my life where I was literally shaking with fear,” she said. “That’s why I cut my hair and continued to cut it.”
This revelation was featured in the third episode of her Facebook mini-series, Red Table Talk, co-hosted by her mother Adrienne Canfield Norris, and teenage daughter Willow Smith.
Other topics discussed have included…