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Hair loss and alopecia are problems that affect more and more people, and their treatment is usually selected according to the source of the disease. In order to effectively determine the cause of the problem, the history and examination of the scalp alone may often turn out to be insufficient. Then, it is worth choosing tests. Trichoscopy can be an auxiliary tool in diagnostics or constitute its basis and be the main test used to determine the essence of the problem of a specific Patient.
trichoscopy examination of the hair

What are trichoscopic examinations like?

Trichoscopic examinations are an advanced, modern form of diagnostics that allows you to assess the condition of the scalp and hair. Thanks to them, you can find the cause of hair loss or skin lesions.

Trichoscopy significantly facilitates the selection of treatment and allows you to avoid more invasive examinations. It allows you to determine the condition of all layers of the epidermis, dermis and subcutaneous tissue on the head, as well as to look closely at the hair structure.

Trichoscopic examinations make it possible to determine whether the hair falls out or breaks in a specific place, which is often very difficult to see when conducting other trichological examinations.

Indications for the examinations

All people who experience excessive hair loss and brittleness or sudden thinning, which becomes visible during everyday functioning, should decide on trichoscopic examinations. They will also be useful when dealing with androgenic, telogen, scarring or plaque alopecia and during anti-hair loss therapy, in order to be able to assess its results.

Trichoscopy will also be a very helpful test for people who have undiagnosed changes on the scalp. Examples of such changes include red spots, scales, dry dandruff, and excessive irritation and sores. It is also carried out in people suffering from seborrhea of the scalp, psoriasis and atopic dermatitis, as well as difficult-to-treat types of mycoses.

Contraindications to the examination

Basically, there are no contraindications for trichoscopy as it is completely non-invasive and painless. It is even carried out in people with extremely sensitive and diseased scalp, as well as in the elderly, children and pregnant women. All concerns regarding the course of the procedure can be discussed with the doctor performing the procedure at any time. There is also no need to prepare yourself for the examination. It is enough to wash your hair as usual 24-72 hours before performing trichoscopy.

It is best not to apply any masks, conditioners, gels or rubs to the scalp before the examination. In the period leading up to them, it is also not allowed to dye the hair or perform other hairdressing treatments that may affect the scalp. If such activities were performed in the near term, it is worth waiting a few weeks before carrying out trichoscopic examinations.

The course of the examinations

Trichoscopy involves placing a head on the patient’s scalp, which displays the image on the computer screen. The equipment allows you to view the skin up to 100x magnification and to take and save photos from the course of the examination, which significantly facilitates diagnostics. Maximum magnification is helpful, but most of the time, the skin is viewed by positioning the diagnostic tool differently.

Both 20 times and 70 times magnification can be used. In the first phase of the test, they are performed without the use of additional specifics. The doctor can then apply an immersion fluid to the skin that has a specific refractive index and allows you to slightly change the resolving power of the equipment used during the test. It is used depending on the initial suspicions about the disease and the condition of the scalp.

During the examination, special attention is paid to lesions, but using a dermatoscope you can also determine the condition and amount of hair and hair follicles, and also carefully look at the growth phases of individual hairs – the doctor is able to assess which of them are currently in the growth phase , downtime, and which are in the dying off phase and determine whether the observed state of affairs is within the normal range. The examination usually takes 20 to 30 minutes.

hair trichoscopy examination Warsaw

Pictures taken during trichoscopic examinations are sent for analysis. Usually, there are about 5 of them, taking into account all the parts of the patient’s head that are important for the diagnostic process. The study focuses on different areas of the scalp – frontal, temporal, and occipital. Thanks to a very accurate image, it is possible to determine, among other things, the number of hair per section of the Patient’s scalp, the number of active, empty and clogged hair follicles and their condition, as well as the rate of exfoliation of the scalp.

The amount or presence of regrowth hair can also be determined. The test results are presented in the form of a trichological report, which contains information about the course of the test, the number of hairs and their diameter, as well as two and three-hair units. The Patient’s skin and hair are tested both quantitatively and qualitatively. Analyzes can be made manually or automatically using a dermatoscope or videodermoscope.

Convalescence after the examination

As trichoscopic examinations do not require disturbance of the scalp tissues, there is no need to observe the convalescence period. Also, the fluid used during the inspection has no significant effect on the patient’s skin. It is only important to prepare for the procedure, and then follow the received medical recommendations.

Trichoscopic examinations in a nutshell

Trichoscopic examinations allow for comprehensive diagnostics of the condition of the scalp and hair.
Thanks to them, it is possible to find the cause of hair loss or distinguish between types of alopecia, which would not be possible with a different diagnostic method.
The tests consist in placing a head on the patient’s skin, which enables its observation and taking pictures even at very high magnification.
They are completely painless and non-invasive, so they can be performed in people of all health and age, and even in pregnant women.
They are carried out very quickly and can be repeated many times, which makes them a great way to follow the course of baldness treatment.

Research outcomes

After trichoscopic examinations, there are no irritations, inflammation does not increase, and the problem of hair loss does not worsen. However, they allow us to propose appropriate treatment tailored to the patient’s ailments. Trichoscopy makes it possible to distinguish between different types of alopecia and to find the cause of scalp problems. It is also useful in identifying the most effective methods to deal with the problem quickly.

It is characterized by no need to collect skin or hair samples for testing. There is also no need to shave the skin, which could cause discomfort for some people. Pictures taken during the trichoscopic diagnosis can be compared at each visit to the doctor. After completing the diagnostic procedure, the Patient receives the test results in paper form, which they can take home with them.

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Trichoscopy with home results including hair density and quantity
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