Clinical diagnosis of common scalp disorders

J Investig Dermatol Symp Proc. 2005 Dec;10(3):190-3. doi: 10.1111/j.1087-0024.2005.10103.x.


Scalp skin is unique on the body due to the density of hair follicles and high rate of sebum production. These features make it susceptible to superficial mycotic conditions (dandruff, seborrheic dermatitis, and tinea capitis), parasitic infestation (pediculosis capitis), and inflammatory conditions (psoriasis). Because these scalp conditions share similar clinical manifestations of scaling, inflammation, hair loss, and pruritus, differential diagnosis is critically important. Diagnostic techniques and effective treatment strategies for each of the above conditions will be discussed.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Animals
  • Child
  • Dermatitis, Seborrheic / diagnosis
  • Dermatomycoses / diagnosis
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Lice Infestations / diagnosis
  • Malassezia
  • Microsporum
  • Middle Aged
  • Pediculus
  • Pityriasis / diagnosis
  • Psoriasis / diagnosis
  • Scalp / parasitology
  • Scalp / pathology
  • Scalp Dermatoses / diagnosis*
  • Tinea Capitis / diagnosis
  • Trichophyton