Home remedies to treat alopecia areata

Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disease that afflicts fewer than 2% of people younger than 50 years. It often starts in the 20s and 30s. In about 6% of these patients the disease progresses to a total loss of scalp hair.

Here are two studies using garlic gel and onion juice.

At the Mazandaran University of Medical Sciences in Iran 40 patients were treated with a steroid gel and either garlic gel or placebo for 3 months.

At the end of treatment, good and moderate responses were observed in all but one of the patients treated with steroid plus garlic but in only one patient treated with the steroid alone.

At the Baghdad Teaching Hospital in Iraq, 38 patients were treated with either onion juice or tap water for 2 months. After 6 weeks hair regrowth was seen in 20 of 23 patients treated with onion juice. After 8 weeks only 2 out of 17 patients treated with tap water had hair regrowth.

Admittedly, I’m skeptical of these results.

This is not the first time that natural remedies have been proposed as effective treatments. Others, such as essential oils reported in 1998 and zinc reported a year later were heard from once and never again.

2/25/07 23:21 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.