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March 1994

Alopecia à Deux: Simultaneous Occurrence of Alopecia in a Husband and Wife

Author Affiliations

Department of Dermatology University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry 601 Elmwood Ave Box 697 Rochester, NY 14642

Arch Dermatol. 1994;130(3):390-392. doi:10.1001/archderm.1994.01690030126026

The incidence of alopecia areata (AA) in the general population is 17.2 per 100 000 per year.1 Within dermatology practices, it affects one to four per 100 patients.2 For an individual, the lifetime risk of AA is about 1%.3 There are reports of AA among siblings,4 including reports of identical twins affected simultaneously.5 Psychosocial causal factors such as stress are implicated in the onset of AA.6-8 Men appear to be equally at risk for developing AA as are women.

Folie à deux is an uncommon entity, referring to the transference of delusional ideas and/or bizarre behaviors from one person to another who are in a close relationship. The result of folie à deux is the sharing of a unique characteristic, which is simultaneously expressed among two or more individuals. We present two cases of AA occurring at the same time in a married couple.

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