Wednesday, January 28

What is telogen effluvium? - Telogen effluvium definition

  ›     ›     ›   What is telogen effluvium? - Telogen effluvium definition.

What is telogen effluvium?

Telogen effluvium is excessive shedding of hair during the resting or telogen phase.
In normal circumstances, at any given time, 80% to 90% of hairs of a person are in the growth (anagen) phase. The rest are in the transitional (catagen) and the resting (telogen) phases. The length of hair depends upon the duration of follicular growth phase, which in turn is genetically defined and determined.

The length of anagen phase differs in different areas of the body and in the same area under different conditions. When the follicular growth phase reaches the defined duration, the hair follicle, passing through the transitional stage, is transformed into telogen stage with the associated cellular changes. The resting may last up to two months.

In many mammals, the hair growth phases are synchronous and the coat shedding is apparent. In humans, the follicular growth phases are asynchronous.
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Each follicle is independently switches from growth phase to resting phase and vice versa. At the end of telogen, the follicle is reactivated and goes through cellular changes. The new hair pushes out the hair in the resting stage, leading to its detachment and shedding.

Typically a person sheds 50 to 100 hairs per day. When the loss of hair is greater than hundred strands and is very apparent on the comb and pillow, we may consider the loss as telogen hair loss. There will be thinning of the hair. The typical symptom of telogen effluvium is the presence of barely perceptible hair bulb on the end of the hair.

Due to many causative factors, the initiation of and the growth of new hair is delayed, leading to increase in the percentage of telogen hair and increase in shedding and generalized thinning. There may be abrupt shift of an increased number of growing hairs into resting stage.
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Definition of telogen effluvium
Definition: considering what is telogen effluvium, it can be defined and summarize as "increased loss of hair, abrupt shift in growth phase to resting stage and delay in onset of fresh growth."
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Reference:
1.Whiting, DA. Chronic telogen effluvium: Increased scalp hair shedding in middle-aged women. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology 35(6): 899-906 ,1996.
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