In a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association Dermatology, researchers conducted a cross-sectional study to approximate the overall incidence of alopecia areata (AA) and its subtypes (alopecia totalis [AT] and alopecia universalis [AU]) in the United States.

The researchers utilized electronic records, which included children, adolescents, and adults seeking healthcare across the four census regions in the U.S. between January 1, 2019, and December 31, 2019. The statistical analysis was conducted between July 21, 2022, and December 22, 2022.

Th results revealed that of the 1,093,176 patients who met inclusion criteria, 1,812 had at least one code for AA, which included 1,216 female (67%) and 596 male (33%) patients. Among adults, children, and adolescents, the overall age-and-gender standardized prevalence was 0.18% and 0.10%, respectively. With regard to women to men, the standardized prevalence ratio was 1.32.

Standardized prevalence was most significant in those aged 30 to 39 years (297 per 100,000) and 40 to 49 years (270 per 100,000). Asian patients had the most significant standardized prevalence, followed by patients of other races or multiple races, African American patients, and Hispanic/Latino patients (414, 314, 226, and 212 per 100,000, respectively), while Caucasian patients had the lowest standardized prevalence (168 per 100,000). The standardized prevalence ratios were 2.47, 1.35, and 1.26 for Asian, African American, and Hispanic/Latino patients, respectively, versus Caucasian patients. An estimated 9% of patients with AA were diagnosed with AT and AU.

The authors concluded, “The findings of this cross-sectional study suggest that there is a significant burden of AA, AT, and AU in the U.S. in which people of color, particularly Asian Americans, appear to be disproportionately affected.”

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