Dermatoses of the Scalp

Paul Farrant, Megan Mowbray, Rodney D. Sinclair


The scalp is a common site of skin problems and a frequent reason for a dermatological consultation. The scalp has a large number of terminal hair follicles, arranged in follicular units that cover the scalp surface. The presence of hairs presents unique problems in the management of the inflammatory skin conditions discussed below. The loss of hair that occurs with age and disease leads to increased ultraviolet exposure to the scalp and subsequent risk of actinic damage and skin cancer. In addition to inflammatory skin conditions and tumours, the scalp is a common site of infections, pruritus and dysaesthesia. In this chapter the disorders that present most frequently in the scalp are discussed, focusing on the management differences at this site. A distinction is made between conditions that present with scale, pustules, secondary alopecia or pruritus and dysaethesia.
Keywords scalp, cicatricial, alopecia, scale, pustules, dysaesthesia, pruritus, tumour, infection, thickening


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