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Dermatologists see increase in hair loss among COVID-19 patients

Published: Mar. 12, 2021 at 5:07 PM CST
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GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - Dermatologists say they are seeing an increase of hair loss in patients who have recovered from COVID-19.

Dr. Apple Bodemer of UW Health says the influx started in the summer and increased in the fall.

Dr. Bodemer helped us understand this symptom during an interview on Action 2 News at 4:30. Watch the full conversation in the video attached to this story.

“Prior to COVID-19, I was seeing two to four hair loss patients per month. Recently I have been seeing up to five or six a day,” said Bodemer. “The type of hair loss associated with the physical and emotional stress related to COVID-19 is called telogen effluvium. Telogen effluvium commonly occurs after a physical or psychological stressor such as a heart attack, car accident, having a baby, loss of a loved one and recently COVID-19.”

Bodemer says when the body is under stress, hair growth stops.

She says hair loss can be stressful, so so recommends some calming techniques.

“In my practice, I talk to my patients about mindfulness, breath work and recommend supplements that help support the adrenal glands, so people are better able to handle the physical effects of stress,” said Bodemer.

In most cases, hair grows back in six to 12 months.

If hair loss lasts six months or more, contact your doctor. Dr. Bodemer says hair loss can be a sign of thyroid disease, iron deficiency, or other undiagnosed medical conditions.

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