The hair loss condition Alopecia Areata was thrown into the headlines in recent times when Chris Rock made an inappropriate joke about Jada Pinkett Smith’s shaved head at the Oscars. Jada was visibly upset following the comment.
Jada has been open about her journey with Alopecia Areata over recent years and in 2021 explained that her Alopecia Areata was such that she had decided to shave her head.
Alopecia Areata is an autoimmune disease where the immune system incorrectly targets the hair follicles. Most people suffering from Alopecia Areata will notice coin shaped areas of hair loss. For some the condition can progress to Alopecia Totalis where there is a loss of all of the hair on the scalp or Alopecia Universalis where all body hair is lost including the eyebrows and eyelashes.
Alopecia Areata can affect both men and women and around 1 in 50 people are affected in their lifetime.
Dr Dmitri Wall provided a statement to the Irish Times at the time to give his insights on the psychological impact of Alopecia Areata on the patients he treats. Read the full Irish Times article.