International Journal of Trichology International Journal of Trichology
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 Table of Contents  
Year : 2013  |  Volume : 5  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 45-46  

Short anagen hair syndrome

1 Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Surgery, University of Miami, Florida, USA
2 Mexico City, Mexico

Date of Web Publication6-Jul-2013

Correspondence Address:
Ingrid Herskovitz
Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Surgery, University of Miami, FL, USA, 1295 NW 14th Street, University of Miami Hospital, South Bldg., Suites K-M, Miami, FL 33136
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0974-7753.114711

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Short anagen syndrome (SAS) is a condition in which hair does not grow long. It usually perceived by parents in children around 2-4 years of age. It is a benign disease of the hair cycle. The condition is relevant from the standpoint of differential diagnosis with loose anagen syndrome. We report a case of SAS in a Hispanic 3-year-old girl.

Keywords: Abnormalities child, growth and development, hair, preschool

How to cite this article:
Herskovitz I, de Sousa IV, Simon J, Tosti A. Short anagen hair syndrome. Int J Trichol 2013;5:45-6

How to cite this URL:
Herskovitz I, de Sousa IV, Simon J, Tosti A. Short anagen hair syndrome. Int J Trichol [serial online] 2013 [cited 2023 Mar 24];5:45-6. Available from: https://www.ijtrichology.com/text.asp?2013/5/1/45/114711

   Introduction Top

Short anagen syndrome (SAS) is a recently recognized congenital disease clinically characterized by persistently short fine hair since birth, due to a decreased duration of the anagen phase. [1],[2],[3] The common complaint is that the hair does not grow long [2],[3],[4] and that it has never been cut. [4],[5] Telogen effluvium is also a common complaint. Only a few cases have been published in the literature, mainly in Caucasian blond-haired girls. [2],[5] Although some authors claim that short anagen is rare, [1],[2] others believe that it is just under-recognized. [4]

We here present a case of SAS in a Hispanic, dark-haired girl.

   Case Report Top

A healthy Hispanic 3-year-old girl presented with a history of short hair since birth. The mother reported that there was excessive shedding and poor hair growth, and that the girl had never needed a haircut. Family history was negative for hair loss or hair diseases. Aggravating factors were denied and the past medical history was uneventful. Upon examination the patient was well- developed and did not present any abnormality except for short, dark, and thin hair [Figure 1] and [Figure 2]. The pull test was positive. Body hair was normal, as was the rest of the physical examination.
Figure 1: Note the short length hair in a 3‑year‑old child

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Figure 2: Telogen hair with tipped point

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Dermoscopy of pulled hairs showed 4.7 cm long telogen hairs with tipped points, which indicates that the hair had never been cut. A diagnosis of SAS was established through clinical and dermoscopic parameters.

   Discussion Top

Short anagen hair syndrome, as the name indicates, is a condition where the anagen phase is shortened [2],[3],[4],[5],[6] and subsequently there is an increase in the number of telogen hairs. [3],[5] The disease is congenital and is thought to be sporadic, [4] even though familial cases have been reported which may suggest an autosomal dominant inheritance. [3]

Clinically, although the hair shaft is normal without signs of breakage [1],[3],[4] the patients are not able to grow long hair and present with increased shedding. [2],[3],[4],[5],[6],[7]

The condition is usually benign, [3],[4] nevertheless associations with tricho-dental syndrome, [6] synchronized pattern of scalp hair growth, [8] and micronychia [1] have been reported.

The characteristic clinical image and the finding of short (less than 6 cm long) telogen hairs with a tipped point at the pull test or trichogram makes the diagnosis. [4],[5]

The main differential diagnosis has to be made with loose anagen syndrome, which also presents with short hair, but the hair is shed during anagen. [4],[5]

Treatment is not necessary as this condition tends to improve after puberty, [3],[4] however improvement with minoxidil and cyclosporine has been reported. [1]

For the exception of a case reported in an African-American patient, [5] three others in Caucasians with dark brown hair, [6],[7],[8] and one in an Asian patient [1] most cases have occurred in Caucasians with fine blond hair. [2],[3],[4] To our knowledge, based on a search of PubMed, (LILACS) Latin American and Caribbean Health Sciences Literature, and Google Scholar from 1999 to the present, using the terms "short anagen" and "SAS" as key words, this is the first case published in a Hispanic dark-haired girl in the English medical literature.

   References Top

1.Jung HD, Kim JE, Kang H. Short anagen syndrome successfully controlled with topical minoxidil and systemic cyclosporine A combination therapy. J Dermatol 2011;38:1108-10.  Back to cited text no. 1
2.Antaya RJ, Sideridou E, Olsen EA. Short anagen syndrome. J Am Acad Dermatol 2005;53:S130-4.  Back to cited text no. 2
3.Barraud-Klenovsek MM, Trüeb RM. Congenital hypotrichosis due to short anagen. Br J Dermatol 2000;143:612-7.  Back to cited text no. 3
4.Giacomini F, Starace M, Tosti A. Short anagen syndrome. Pediatr Dermatol 2011;28:133-4.  Back to cited text no. 4
5.Avashia N, Woolery-Lloyd H, Tosti A, Romanelli P. Short anagen syndrome in an African American woman. J Am Acad Dermatol 2010;63:1092-3.  Back to cited text no. 5
6.Kersey PJ. Tricho-dental syndrome: A disorder with a short hair cycle. Br J Dermatol 1987;116:259-63.  Back to cited text no. 6
7.Doche I, Donati A, Valente NS, Romiti R, Hordinsky MK. Short anagen syndrome in a girl with curly dark hair and consanguineous parents. J Am Acad Dermatol 2012;67:e279-80.  Back to cited text no. 7
8.Thai KE, Sinclair RD. Short anagen hair with persistent synchronized pattern of scalp hair growth. J Am Acad Dermatol 2003;49:949-51.  Back to cited text no. 8


  [Figure 1], [Figure 2]

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