For a lot of people, the condition Alopecia Areata Multilocularis (AA) means nothing.
Two years ago Lisa Goodman was amongst those who hadn’t heard the term before but in February 2006 she was diagnosed with the condition, which affects around 1 per cent of Australians.
AA is a non-contagious autoimmune disorder in which the body attacks its own hair follicles and suppresses or stops hair growth.
At first Lisa started losing hair at the back of her head and had a bald spot the size of a 20 cent piece.
This stayed the same way for about six months, when she started losing hair in three separate spots.
It was not until the beginning of 2007 when her condition rapidly increased that she was forced to shave her head.
It was around the same time as the Queensland Cancer Council’s annual Shave for a Cure campaign so she was able to hide the real reason why she had shaved all her hair off.
“At that stage I was still very embarrassed and unsure about my condition and found it easier if I could hide behind my bandanna,” Lisa said.
“It has taken me a lot to be able to feel comfortable in public, showing people my condition.”
Because Alopecia is not fully understood there is no known cure at the moment.
At the beginning of 2007 when Lisa had lost more than half her hair she had a dose of steroid injections to her head, which made small five cent piece patches of hair grow back within six months.
It was very uncomfortable and after enduring 20 injections to the affected areas on her scalp she was very relieved to have it over and done with.
She has also used many natural medicines and remedies over the past two years but stopped taking them recently.
“After two years I have come to terms with my condition,” she said.
“I believe that everything happens for a reason and that I will be a better person for it.
“If my hair grows back, great, if it doesn’t then I will have to work around it.
“Either way, apart from having patchy hair I am perfectly healthy.”
Lisa encouraged people to research Alopecia on the internet and said that if people had any questions they could feel free to come and see her, and have a look at what her head looks like uncovered.
She thanked family and friends for their support, along with the Princess Charlotte’s Alopecia Foundation.
Lisa speaks about her battle with hair loss
Alopecia Areata Multilocularis (AA) affects around 1 percent of Australians