A new treatment method introduced at the Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) has made a significant impact on individuals with alopecia areata, a common autoimmune disorder that often results in unpredictable hair loss.
Some 30 individuals have been treated for alopecia areata at HMC’s Department of Dermatology and Venereology with the new medication ‘Tofacitinib’ and 90 percent of them have significantly improved, said Professor Dr Martin Steinhoff, Chairman at the Department of Dermatology and Venereology at HMC.
“In the majority cases of alopecia areata, hair falls out in small patches around the size of a quarter. The immune system play a significant role in this condition. In 2015, Tofacitinib, a rheumatoid arthritis medicine, have been proven safe and with limited side effects. We introduced the medicine at HMC in 2017 and within two years around 30 patients have been treated,” he said speaking to media.
Tofacitinib is a medication approved by the Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and that has recently been shown to be effective in treating alopecia areata.
“Tofacitinib is an early treatment which has been recognised few years ago and introduced at HMC ahead of some countries. This medication is available only at HMC’s Department of Dermatology and Venereology situated in Rumailah Hospital and it should be only prescribed by experienced dermatologists,” said Professor Steinhoff.
Professor Steinhoff was joined by Dr Amina Obaidali, Consultant, speaking to media at the Hamad bin Khalifa Medical City.
“Many patients who come to us have been bullied and suffered due to alopecia areata. Within two years we have treated 30 patients with Tofacitinib and 90 percent of them have significantly improved and have a normal life,” said Dr Obaidali.
The Department of Dermatology and Venereology at the HMC as a centre-of-excellence for skin care, will provide new services and wide range of outpatient clinics for all important subspecialties.
“The Department of Dermatology and Venereology has been awarded as a centre of excellence in 2018, for skin diseases. Because we have introduced several new diagnostics and treatments for varies skin diseases,” said Dr Professor Steinhoff. “We are highly to dedicated to improve diagnosis, treatment and prevention of skin diseases among the people in Qatar.
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