hey all,

i'm new to this website, but have found it incredibly encouraging to know that i'm not alone. i was diagnosed w/ aa end of this past july and sadly, have found my aa progressing worse. i lost my entire right eyebrow and now in the process of losing the other (is there anything that can be done to prevent my other eyebrow from further loss or do i have to watch it all fall out again...). however, one thing i noticed was my missing eyebrow has "white hair." i was curious on how the process of growing (if, and hopefully soon) new normal hair occurs? does the white hair just naturally fall off and new healthy pigmented eyebrow hair grows underneath? for those that have experienced eyebrow growth, how did it happen for you? also, i was prescribed elidel, but i'm terrified of using it because of its black box warning, has anyone had any success w/ it? or any success w/ alternative medicine?

also, i read that stress can make alopecia worse, does that include even physical stress like exercise? i registered for a marathon and have been 3 months into my training, where now, i'm thinking about withdrawing for fear that i might exacerbate my condition.

sorry for all these questions, i'm trying to understand aa more, and hopefully w/ more understanding, i'll begin to accept these changes i now face.

thanks for taking the time to read and post. =)

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Welcome to Alopecia World, Clare! You'll find so much support and help here.

I lost my eyebrows a year and a half ago, and their loss was harder on me than going bald. But, I got permanent tattooed brows and lashes, and moved on. Then a few months ago, my facial hair started growing back, and I now have 1/2 of one eyebrow, and 2/3 of the other! I use brow powder to fill in the hairless gaps where my tattoos have faded, and will soon have the tattoos touched up. I did NOTHING to make my eyebrows or lashes regrow. That's the way AA is - it's gonna do what it wants.

In my case, I'm very sure that stress has had nothing to do with my hair loss, but other people here feel it did affect theirs. I was under a lot less stress when I started to lose my hair than in previous years before my AA appeared. I can tell you that exercise is definitely a GOOD thing! You will feel better about yourself and be healthier overall if you do that marathon! My facial hair regrowth has come after I started doing weightlifting and I'm very active. Don't stop!

Hang in there,
Mary
dear mary, i'm soo happy to hear about your eyebrows! i hope it continues to grow in strength and in numbers!! but yes, it is terrible and psychologically draining! i've read online, that many ppl say that eyebrow hair loss is worse than the other hair losses, so i guess it's kinda good that, that's going first, then i'll be able to handle anything else that comes my way!!

thank you for the encouragement & advice! =)
Here's some of the science about the white hairs. Not a whole lot is known:

"...Alopecia areata commonly affects pigmented hairs and is less able to attack un-pigmented or white hairs. Alopecia areata runs an unpredictable course and may last many years with some re-growth, or it may cycle through expression and remission. In some cases, it may only last for a short period and normal hair growth can be quickly re- established within months. Because of partial telogen-to-anagen conversion, the initial re-growth in alopecia areata may consist of short, white, "fuzzy" hairs.

Some people with alopecia areata may experience changes in hair color during, or after, an episode of hair loss and at times these color changes can be permanent. The phenomena that pigmented hairs are more frequently affected by alopecia areata and that re-growing hair is often initially white are still not explained scientifically."

Thea
baldgirlsdolunch.org
thank you for this post! it's very informative!
This discussion prompted me to check with my dermatologist - I hadn't thought of using cortisone cream on my eyebrow bald spots, and I asked him. He has prescribed desonide cream, and says I can use on the eyebrows twice daily for the next month. I'm hoping this might jolt the bare areas of my regrowing eyebrows into action. Has anybody used this cream?

Mary
It's in the same class as many other low potency cortico-steroids. It's benefit for alopecia is the anti-inflammatory effect. It's not as strong as other topical steroids, but is safe to use on the face. One of the benefits is formulation choice because Desonide is produced as a lotion, cream or ointment with lotion and cream being most easily absorbed and not looking oily. Start low potency. Work your way up to another corticosteroid if you see no benefit.

If it were me, I would try to jump start more brow growth with sub-dermal injections of steroid into the brow for a couple of months.

Good luck and good wishes for continued growth.

Thea
baldgirlsdolunch.org
Im using a foam and a gel ( think you know about them already). Still getting hairs on my head. Im also taking a high dose of prednisone...but once every 2 wks. As far as my brows, I have to get some brow powder....mine are starting to grow..but they are white. Also, the foam leaves that area red...so I have to use makeup and draw on brows anyway. Did your brows grow back in the same place as the tattoos? Mine sort of are...but a little off.
exercise is a natural stress reliever and i have found that the more i exercise the better my hair growth is
hehe, i better run that marathon then! =)
Hi Clare,
Funny my eyebrows were the first to go. I had a full head of hair and no brows for about 6 months (not that I'm saying...) I have recently been getting injections on my eyebrows and eyelashes (the bottom rows have left me) and putting a mild topical steroid and the brows are slowly growing back in patches for the first time in 2 years. I got my brows tatty-ed on a year ago which was a good move for me because it's hard to free-hand pencil every day and now I just fill in with an eye pencil and put some brow-scara on the hairs that have surfaced.

Exercise is your drug! I have been an athlete all my life (played professionally) and kind of stopped when my hair started falling out because I felt so defeated and helpless and didn't want to deal with balding gym hair. I went to a physciatrist and they gave me happy pills which made thinsg worse. I have since dropped the drugs and work out every day and feel great. Keep the training no matter what - regardless of whether you run the marathon.
Well when I began to loose eyebrows I couldnt do anything to stop it. There is no way we can stop them from falling when our alopecia is increasing. Even if they do grow back, they fall again coz the roots of the hair arent strong enough to hold them for a long time. I keep getting my eyebrows back & then loose them again. Its just a recurring process.
Regarding stress, u have to take care of ur diet, esp. u have to maintain the content of iron. Thats why alpecians feel more stressed out & fatigued after phy. exercise due to short of iron. Wat lots of green veggies & fruits. Drink milk at least once or twice a day.
hello, i have alopecia universalis have for 3 years now!! my eyelashes and eyebrows have fully come back :)my underarm hair and leg hair are also back and i have growth on my head very dark hair too i jut wanted to say i have NOT used any creams or soultions in my time i have just let nature take its course......just giving you some peace of mind that if you relax i know its hard ! but you will be fine go to your marathon you will feel fantastic that you achieved it :) exercising is fantastic i walk for an hour at night for 3 nights its great stress relief hope this helps :)

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