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May 1963

Study of Postpartum Alopecia

Author Affiliations


Department of Dermatology, Boston University School of Medicine.

Arch Dermatol. 1963;87(5):609-611. doi:10.1001/archderm.1963.01590170067011

A study of 98 patients with postpartum alopecia is presented. Few gave a family history of hair loss, suggesting that heredity is not a factor. In 88.7% of the cases hair loss began between 8 and 16 weeks after delivery.

The anterior scalp was involved in 59.1%, in 20.4% it was diffuse over the entire scalp, and in 11.2% the frontal regions alone were involved. Seborrhea is probably not a factor of significance. Four to six months were required for return to normal in 66.6% of the cases. With only two exceptions there was complete regrowth; in those two another disorder appears responsible for the failure to reach normalcy.

Later postpartum alopecia is likely if it has once occurred unless the new pregnancy is established very early in the postpartum period. Therapy consists primarily of reassurance.