Prognosis

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Regrowth from an initial patch occurs within 6 months in 33% of cases, and within 1 year in 50%; however, 33% never recover from the initial episode.8 Almost every patient will develop further patches if followed for long enough.4

Adverse prognostic factors include age less than 10 years at time of first episode, ophiasis pattern or total alopecia, poor response to previous treatment and the presence of associated atopy, nail dystrophy or Down's syndrome.9 The duration of alopecia areata prior to treatment is also thought to be an independent prognostic factor.10

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