alopecia (drug induced)
Several drugs may cause a generalised hair loss of no obvious pattern. The condition is better tolerated if the patient is warned beforehand. A well made wig will often improve morale.
Common causes of iatrogenic alopecia include:
- cytotoxics - cyclosphosphamide, mercaptopurine derivatives, colchicine, adriamycin
- antithyroid drugs - carbimazole, thiouracil
- anticoagulants - heparin, warfarin
- antituberculous agents - ethionamide
- excess vitamin A and synthetic retinoids
- oral contraceptives
In the absence of a demonstrable cause, the condition is often labelled as "idiopathic diffuse hair loss."
Last reviewed 10/2018