Q1. What type of scalp infections are seen with hair loss?
Two types of scalp infections are common – bacterial and fungal. Bacterial infections are seen in form of boils on the head, like pimples. The boils can be rather painful, but most often they do not cause much hair loss. On the other hand fungal infections are more common in patients with baldness. This is because that a lot of patients with baldness also have an excessively oily scalp, a secretion called sebum. The sebum is a source of food for the fungal infections which then latch onto the scalp very easily and accelerate the hair fall leading to baldness at a young age.
Q2. Where do we catch these infections from?
Like many other infections, they are also airborne. Leave a piece of bread on the table for two days and there will be a fungal growth on it. There is a very interesting story about fungal infections. In the 1920’s when the Pharaoh Tutankhamen’s tomb was broken into by the archaeologists, they were warned that they have been cursed to die soon. Being men of science they did not believe this, but strangely some of them did die shortly. For a long time it was unexplained, until recently when it was found that they had suffered from fungal infections of the lungs. Its seems the pharaohs tomb was shut airtight for 2000 years during which there was plenty of fungal growth in the tomb and the first few people who entered the tomb inhaled it and died thereafter. That’s how tenacious fungal infections can be. I have treated patients who had it on the scalp for as long as 20-30 years.
Dr Shahid Shamsher is a leading Trichologist certified from UK, Australia & India. Practicing since 27 years in the field of Trichology, even today he consults every patient personally himself rather than leave it to assistants. He can be reached on 080 42067474 / 75.