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JUST DIAGNOSED / TREATMENT FOR ALOPECIA AREATA
Solutions would like to acknowledge that the information
on our website has been prepared and provided by the
National Alopecia Areata Foundation (NAAF). We
sincerely thank them for their generosity and support. For further information about the NAAF, please
Alopecia areata is a common disease that results in the loss of
hair on the scalp and elsewhere on the body. There are three
types of alopecia areata: alopecia areata, alopecia totalis and
Alopecia areata, the most common variation of the autoimmune
disease, presents itself as round, smooth patches of various
In all forms of alopecia areata, the hair follicles remain alive
and are ready to resume normal hair production whenever they
receive the appropriate signal. In all cases, hair re-growth may
occur even without treatment and even after many years.
Alopecia areata occurs in males and females of all ages and
races; however, onset most often begins in childhood and can be
psychologically devastating. Although not life-threatening,
alopecia areata is most certainly life-altering, and its sudden
onset, recurrent episodes, and unpredictable course have a
profound psychological impact on the lives of those disrupted by
this disease. But there is hope. In all cases, hair re-growth
may occur even without treatment and even after many years.
Treatment options are best discussed with the Dermatologist who
made the diagnosis. However, there is general information that
NAAF can provide, based primarily on your type of alopecia
areata. This information is only useful as a resource; your
doctor should be your primary source of all medical information.
If you are unable to find a dermatologist in your area who
treats patients with alopecia areata, please contact
NAAF has a list of dermatologists across the country that treats
alopecia areata patients.
Patchy Alopecia Areata
How to File for Insurance Reimbursement
Many people with Alopecia Areata are trying to convince
insurance carriers to cover the cost of a prosthesis even when
the law does not require it. Information from people who have
succeed in obtaining insurance payments for hair prostheses or
medical treatments has been compiled in NAAF’s Insurance Packet.
NAAF will provide this packet upon request.
Here, in brief, are the steps we suggest you follow to convince
an insurance carrier to cover the cost of hair prostheses or
Prepare for Denial of Your Claim
Speak with your plan administrator.
Obtain a list of your rights as the Insured.
Obtain a copy of your full contract.
Know your contract. Pay particular attention to exclusions
for prosthetics (wigs may be excluded as cosmetic). If your
policy does not spell out exclusions under prosthetics, this
may help you win your claim. If your claim is denied as ‘not
a covered benefit,’ write an appeal.
As for a review by a medical review board
Attach a copy of your original claim and all supporting
materials. Explain the difference between a wig and a
prosthesis. Explain the functions of body hair: it protects
the scalp from the sun; protects eyes from dust particles;
regulates body temperature; filters particles from the nose
and protects the skin.
If you are undergoing treatment, explain again how this
is NOT cosmetic treatment.
Ask for a written reply (insurance companies resist writing
anything that may be considered ‘bad faith’ in future court
Send your appeal to a claims supervisor or manager. If you
don’t, the person who initially reviewed your claim may
reject it again.
Consider Small Claims Court
Keep all correspondence in preparation for this possibility.
Do not reply on your memory.
Insist on written confirmation from your carrier for all
conversations. Make sure this includes date, time and full
name and title of the person with whom you spoke.
You should follow up all conversations with your own
confirmation letter, which you should supply to the
insurance carrier. Make sure to document the date, time, and
full name and title of the person with whom you spoke.
Contact Your State Insurance Commissioner
You may file a claim against your insurance company through
your state Insurance Commissioner’s office.
Work with your State Legislature to Secure Mandated Coverage
Finding Others with Alopecia Areata
After an alopecia areata diagnosis, it is important to realize
that you are not alone. NAAF has developed many programs aimed
at connecting individuals who have alopecia areata in common.
Whether you would like to talk with another parent on the
telephone, or you would prefer to have your family attend a
local support group, NAAF can help. It will do you no good to
keep your questions and your feelings bottled inside; there is
somebody who will understand, and may even have a bit of