Pseudofolliculitis Barbae - Causes, Symptoms and Treatment
P is a common condition of the beard area. As naturally curly hairs begin to grow back after shaving, waxing or plucking, they get trapped inside the follicle, resulting in irritation and swelling. causing inflammation and a reaction causing keloidal scarring which looks like hard bumps. This occurs as shaving sharpens the ends of the hairs like a spear. The hairs then curve back into the skin causing pseudofolliculitis barbae.
Severe cases of folliculitis may cause permanent hair loss and scarring. Pseudofolliculitis barbae is most common on the male face, but it can also happen on other parts of the body where hair is shaved or plucked, especially areas where hair is curly and the skin is sensitive, such as genital parts of the body. Mostly curly haired people are prone to this disease.
Pseudofolliculitis barbae is a type of folliculitis .Its other names are shaving rash or razor bumps. The etymology comes from "pseudo" means false"follicle" means hair "itis" resembles inflammation and "barbae" resembles of the beard. So, the disorder is related to hair follicle at the beard area.
The possible symptoms of pseudofolliculitis barbae are as:-
- Pseudofolliculitis barbae makes skin itchy.
- There may be rashes at the affected areas.
- Skin becomes red.
- Pimples or pustules located around a hair follicle may form crusts and usually occur on neck axilla or groin area.
- Pimples may also present as genital lesions at the genital parts.
The main causes of pseudofolliculitis barbae are as:-
- Barber's itch is a staph infection of the hair follicles in the bearded area of the face, usually the upper lip.
- Blade shaving is the main cause, as it causes the hair ends to sharpen.
- Plucking of hair may cause abnormal hair growth in injured follicles
- Exposure to some substances such as coal tar, pitch or creosote may also result in Pseudofolliculitis barbae.
- Excess perspiration may also a factor in the development of the disease.
- Disorder such as Dermatitis is another factor to be considered.
- Use of Plastic dressings or adhesive tape may also cause Pseudofolliculitis barbae..
- Some medications or viruses can also cause the disease.
The effective treatments for pseudofolliculitis barbae are as:-
- First of all,let the beard grow for 30 days to remove ingrown hairs.
- For shaving use a single blade razor. Double blade razors cut the hairs too short allowing them to grow in.
- Polyester skin-cleansing pad or a moisturizing shaving foam can be used to make the condition better.
- Electric hair clippers or a razor with an attachment can also be used that generally leaves the cut hairs long
- Always shave in the direction of the follicle. Do not try to stretch the skin.
- If possible try to minimize the friction from clothing.
- Prolonged course of tetracycline can be tried as prescribed by the doctor in severe case.
- Laser hair removal may also be helpfull.
- Topical antibiotics such as Bactroban, oral antibiotics e.g., dicloxacillin, or antifungal medications are generally taken to control the infection.
- Lotion containing glycolic acid can also be applied to the affected areas.