Dermatol Ther (Heidelb) (2021)
The inflammation storm involved in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) infection and worsening and the psychological stress derived from current quarantine conditions can affect the course of many skin and scalp conditions. This study examined the possible effects of COVID‐19 on alopecia areata (AA) relapse in patients suffering from these scalp conditions during the pandemic.
The study was carried out in the form of an observational cross-sectional type using a questionnaire sent by mail to a cohort of patients affected by AA during the pandemic from March 2020 to October 2020.
During the pandemic, AA relapse was reported in 42.5% of the participants who also declared COVID-19 infection, confirmed by nasopharyngeal swab or hematological analysis. The relapse was reported about 2 months later COVID-19 infection (median of 2.14 months) and 74.0% of these participants continue to experience AA symptoms when the survey was proposed. Only 12.5% of participants reported AA relapse in the absence of COVID-19 infection.
The present study reported a significant relapse in patients suffering from AA and infected by COVID-19. This phenomenon could be attributed to the inflammation storm typical of COVID-19 infection and the psychological stress derived from quarantine conditions.
Fabio Rinaldi, Anna Trink, Giammaria Giuliani, Daniela Pinto