Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors

"What can cause bald patches on the skull?"

ZocdocAnswersWhat can cause bald patches on the skull?


I'm a 35 year old male. I'm getting bald patches on my skull, and they're really sticking. What are the treatments out there? And am I sick?


I would definitely recommend going to see your primary care doctor about this issue. The first thing they will want to do is to see if the balding is occurring in a typical "male pattern baldness" fashion. If so, then there is unlikely to be any other underlying medical condition, other than a predisposition to baldness, and they will be able to discuss with you the various treatments that are available for slowing down and/or potentially reversing the hair loss from male pattern baldness. On the other hand, if the pattern of hair loss is not consistent with male pattern baldness - for example, if it is occurring in isolated round patches on the sides of the head - then they will need to consider other causes. For example, fungal infections of the scalp can cause baldness, as can various inflammatory skin conditions like eczema or psoriasis. There is also a condition called alopecia areata, which is an autoimmune form of hair loss that has a distinct look on physical examination, and that may require intervention if it does not spontaneously resolve. Start by making an appointment with your primary care doctor (or your dermatologist, if you have one) for evaluation.

Zocdoc Answers is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.