Association of Low Serum Ferritin Levels in Patients Having Alopecia Areata: A Case Control Study


  • Ramsha Khan Department of Dermatology, Shalamar Hospital, Lahore.
  • Annum Ashraf Department of Dermatology, Shalamar Hospital, Lahore.
  • Uzma Sarwar Department of Dermatology, Shalamar Hospital, Lahore.
  • Iqra Fatima Department of Community Medicine, CMH Medical & Dental College, Lahore.
  • Aysha Arif Department of Dermatology, Shalamar Hospital, Lahore.
  • Muhammad Azam Bokhari Department of Dermatology, Shalamar Hospital, Lahore.



Alopecia Areata, Serum ferritin levels, Iron deficiency


Introduction: Alopecia areata is a medical condition characterized by non-scarring hair loss occurring in patches. Etiopatho-genesis of the disease involves genetic, immunological and various other factors. Reduced ferritin stores lead to impaired DNA synthesis disrupting hair follicle production hence playing a role in the patho-physiology of alopecia areata.

Aims & Objectives: To establish the association of low serum ferritin levels and alopecia areata.

Place and Duration of Study: The study was conducted for duration of six months from February to August 2022 at Dermatology Department Shalamar Hospital, Lahore.

Material & Method: A total of 104 participants were recruited for this study, into a group of 52 patients having alopecia areata and 52 age and gender matched healthy controls. All these participants were advised to get their serum ferritin levels done from the same laboratory to control bias. Values of serum ferritin levels were recorded in ng/ml on a predesigned proforma. The data was analyzed using SPSS version 23.0. Frequencies and percentages were calculated for qualitative variables, p ? 0.05 was considered statistically significant.

Results: Mean age was 30.63±4.15 years in case group and 29.94±3.65 years in control group. Within each group (n=52), 16 were males whereas 36 were females (p=1.000). Serum ferritin levels were 18.82±4.47ng/ml in case group and 20.92±4.31ng/ml in control group (p=0.017). Frequency of low serum ferritin level was 63%(29) in case group and 37 %(17) in control group (p=0.029) with significant Odds Ratio of 2.596.

Conclusion: We concluded that there is significant association of alopecia areata and low serum ferritin levels and early detection and restoration of iron stores may potentially enhance the management of alopecia areata.


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How to Cite

Ramsha Khan, Annum Ashraf, Uzma Sarwar, Iqra Fatima, Aysha Arif, Muhammad Azam Bokhari. Association of Low Serum Ferritin Levels in Patients Having Alopecia Areata: A Case Control Study. Proceedings S.Z.M.C [Internet]. 2024 Apr. 29 [cited 2024 Jun. 25];38(2):90-4. Available from: