The medical term for hair loss is alopecia, which can be broadly categorised into scarring hair loss (cicatricial alopecia) or non-scarring hair loss (non-cicatricial alopecia). Both forms of alopecia can be distressing to experience.



The key to successfully treating hair loss is to find out what’s causing it. As a dermatologist, Dr Tarryn Jacobs will go through your history and conduct a thorough examination to determine what type of hair loss you have. Dermatologists are specialists with the highest training in treating hair disorders. There are different types of hair loss, namely

  • Hereditary hair loss - androgenic alopecia is a type of hereditary hair loss that's the most common cause of hair loss worldwide. In men, it's called male pattern hair loss, while women get female pattern hair loss.
  • Alopecia areata – this type of hair loss occurs when the immune system attacks hair follicles that hold the hair in place. You can lose hair anywhere on your body, including your scalp, eyebrows, eyelashes, beard and other parts of the body. Some people lose their eyelashes or eyebrows.
  • Telogen effluvium – this is a type of hair loss that occurs after giving birth, recovering from an illness, or having an operation. You may notice a lot more hairs on your hairbrush or on your pillow. This can also happen after a stressful time in your life or with certain medication.
  • Traction alopecia – This type of hair loss occurs when you often wear your hair tightly pulled back or with certain hairstyles; the continual pulling can lead to permanent hair loss.

Scarring alopecia - this develops when inflammation destroys hair follicles. A hair follicle cannot grow hair once it has been destroyed. There are different types of scarring alopecia, each with a different therapeutic approach.


Dr Jacobs will examine your scalp and hair and may need to perform further laboratory testing and or even skin biopsy from the scalp if it’s appropriate. After an examination and work-up, a comprehensive treatment plan will be determined, which may include topical and or oral medications.