What are the STDs That Cause Hair Loss?

STDs –– like many dangerous diseases –– are threatening in large part because of their ability to hide in place sight. Indeed, most STDs can remain asymptomatic for long periods of time. It’s entirely possible for someone to have an STD and not realize it. What’s more, when STD symptoms do appear, they may mimic other, more innocuous conditions. One of them is hair loss. Today, we’ll take a closer look at the STDs that cause hair loss and explain what you can do to protect your well-being: 

Which STDs Cause Hair Loss? 

It’s worth noting that hair loss is not a particularly common symptom of STDs. Only two STDs –– HIV and syphilis –– are known to cause hair loss. And even then, hair loss is not a “typical” symptom of either. Yet, these infections do occasionally cause hair loss. As such, it’s important for all sexually active individuals to realize that hair loss could be linked to a serious STD. 

Syphilis Hair Loss 

Syphilis has several distinct phases. The first phase is marked by the appearance of a chancre, which is a syphilitic sore that forms where the disease enters the body. A chancre can appear in or on the genitals, mouth, or anus, for example. Some people may not notice this chancre, and it will go away on its own after a few weeks. Multiple chancres may manifest as well. 

During its second stage, syphilis may cause hair loss for both men and women. Note, other symptoms –– such as rashes on the hands and feet, genital region, or mouth –– are more common. Still, individuals may experience hair loss due to syphilis. This most often occurs in the form of “moth-eaten alopecia,” which is characterized by patches in the hair. Like the first stage, secondary-stage syphilis symptoms can go away untreated. Without treatment, though, syphilis can cause a myriad of serious, permanent issues like blindness, nerve damage, paralysis, or even death. 

HIV and Hair Loss

Because HIV attacks and inhibits the body’s immune system, it can cause a number of opportunistic infections to transpire. As such, people with HIV may be prone to conditions like Telogen Effluvium (TE). Hair loss in such an instance may even be extreme –– it could come out in handfuls at a time. People with HIV may also be at risk of developing diffuse alopecia as well. Though, fewer than 10% of people with HIV experience this symptom. 

STD Treatments & Hair Loss

Some older medications used to treat STDs may have caused hair loss in some individuals. While such medications are not as widespread today, some still are in use. You can speak to a medical professional for more information on this subject. 

A Word from Same Day STD Testing

Millions of people suffer from some form of hair loss, and only a fraction of those cases are caused by STDs. Nevertheless, if you’ve noticed hair loss in conjunction with other common STD symptoms, then it’s imperative to get tested ASAP. At Same Day, we’ll answer any questions you may have about the testing process and ensure you’re able to access quality, confidential testing services when you need them. Contact us at 844-394-8520 for more information or visit a facility near you today.

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