Comma Hairs: A Dermatoscopic Marker for Tinea Capitis

    Monika Słowińska, Lidia Rudnicka, Robert A. Schwartz, Elżbieta Kowalska-Olędzka, Adriana Rakowska, Justyna Sicińska, Małgorzata Łukomska, Małgorzata Olszewska, Elżbieta Szymańska
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    TLDR Comma hairs are a specific sign of tinea capitis when viewed with videodermatoscopy.
    In a study from 2008, researchers investigated whether videodermatoscopy could distinguish tinea capitis (TC), a fungal infection of the scalp, from alopecia areata (AA), a non-scarring hair loss condition. The study involved two patients with TC caused by Microsporum canis, confirmed by Wood lamp fluorescence and mycological culture, and compared their videodermatoscopy results with those of 12 patients with AA. The key finding was that comma hairs, which are comma-shaped structures, were a distinctive feature of TC and were not observed in AA. AA was characterized by exclamation mark hairs, vellus hairs, and yellow dots. The study concluded that comma hairs could be a specific videodermatoscopy marker for TC caused by M. canis, differentiating it from AA. However, the study was limited by its small sample size, including only two patients with TC.
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