Eyebrow alopecia occurs when the hair of the brows falls out. Eyebrow hair loss may be total or partial, and it may occur due to a number of factors. Eyebrow hair loss can occur as a complication of certain skin conditions, as a side effect of chemotherapy or prescription drug use, or as a result of poisoning with heavy metals or other toxins. Autoimmune disorders may be among the most common causes of eyebrow loss, however.
Hair loss on the brow region may lead to thinning eyebrows, spot baldness on the brow, or total eyebrow alopecia. Loss of eyebrow hair, or thinning of eyebrow hair, is considered relatively common. Both women and men experience this condition. Those who have experienced androgenic alopecia may be more likely to also experience thinning of the eyebrow hair or loss of the eyebrow hair.
Causes of eyebrow hair loss can vary widely. Hormonal imbalances can play a large role in body hair loss, including those caused by endocrine disorders and pregnancy. Skin conditions, including skin growths, skin cancers, psoriasis, and dermatitis, can lead to loss of eyebrow hair when they affect the skin of the brow region. Various chemotherapy cancer treatments can lead to body hair loss, but other types of drugs can also cause hair loss. These can include the drugs used to treat depression or seizure disorders.
A range of various diseases, including fungal infections of the skin, leprosy, and even syphilis can lead to eyebrow alopecia. Poisoning with heavy metals, such as gold, mercury, thallium, or iodine, can cause loss of eyebrow hair. Excessive vitamin consumption can contribute to the loss of eyebrow hair, as can the excessive use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory pain relievers such as ibuprofen, acetaminophen, or naproxyn. Excessive pulling or plucking of eyebrow hairs can also lead to eyebrow alopecia, since plucking the hairs can gradually damage the follicles and inhibit hair regrowth.
Most cases of eyebrow alopecia may be traced back to autoimmune disorders. Lupus can cause skin inflammation that leads to follicle damage. Vitiligo, a condition that causes the skin to lose its natural pigmentation, can also lead to follicle damage and hair loss in the affected areas. Alopecia areata, a disorder in which the immune system attacks the hair follicles, can result in spot baldness and eyebrow hair loss.
Treatment for eyebrow hair loss often depends on its cause. Treating the underlying disorder can help restore hair growth in many cases. If this isn't possible, follicle serums can help re-stimulate eyebrow hair growth.