Alopecia treatments: oral steroids (tablets)

Grace, Rosie and Michael all talked about trying oral steroids (tablets) for their alopecia areata. No one we talked to currently used them.

Taking steroids in tablet form was often seen as more serious and unusual than using topical steroid treatments, which are applied on top of the skin.

Becky decided not to try oral steroids as she had talked to her mum about it and heard it could cause water retention and weight gain. She worried about putting a medicine “into” her system, preferring that “you could choose how much” topical treatment to apply and “where you put it”.

There were some side effects and concerns for those who had tried steroids in tablet form.

Michael had help from his mum with deciding about steroid treatments. He tried steroid tablets but thinks that they affected his mood and made it more difficult to sleep.

Age at interview 19

Gender Male

Age at diagnosis 13

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Grace says oral steroids helped stimulate hair regrowth, but that she could have only a short course because of risks and side effects.

Age at interview 18

Gender Female

Age at diagnosis 10

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