Is Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) Causing My Hair Loss?

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a chronic autoimmune disorder that primarily affects the joints. However, it can have systemic effects, impacting various parts of your body. One of the lesser-known side effects of RA is hair loss. This article will explore the connection between rheumatoid arthritis and hair loss, the role of RA medications, and potential treatments for managing hair loss. 

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The following topics will be discussed: 

  • The connection between Rheumatoid Arthritis and Hair Loss 
  • Rheumatoid Medications and Hair Loss 
  • Other Autoimmune Disorders that cause hair loss 
  • What can I do to counter Rheumatoid Arthritis Hair Loss 

The connection between Rheumatoid Arthritis and Hair Loss 

Rheumatoid Arthritis is an autoimmune condition where the immune system mistakenly attacks the body’s own tissues, leading to inflammation and pain. While the joints are the primary target, rheumatoid arthritis can affect other body systems, increasing the risk of other health conditions. In some rare cases, rheumatoid arthritis can also contribute to hair loss. 

The exact mechanisms behind rheumatoid arthritis-related hair loss are not fully understood. However, the autoimmune response is believed to extend to the skin, affecting hair follicles. Rheumatoid arthritis flare-ups may also trigger hair loss, though this is relatively uncommon. When hair loss occurs, it is typically not severe and often results in thinning rather than patches of baldness. 

Rheumatoid Medications and Hair Loss 

Rheumatoid Arthritis Medications can cause hair loss, but it is usually not severe hair loss and hair growth returns usually to normal after stopping the medication.  

Disease-modifying antirheumatic Drugs (DMARDs) 

DMARDs are commonly used to treat Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) by suppressing the immune system. This can help control the inflammation associated with the disease, but it can also lead to hair loss. 

The most common DMARD used to treat RA is methotrexate. Methotrexate suppresses the immune system by targeting fast-growing cells, including hair follicles which can cause hair thinning. Another DMARD, leflunomide, can cause hair loss but it is less common. 


Biologics are another class of drugs used to treat RA. They work by blocking specific cells and proteins involved in the immune system’s inflammatory response. Biologics like etanercept (Enbrel) and adalimumab (Humira) can potentially cause hair thinning, but this side effect is rare. The exact reason for hair thinning with biologics is not well understood but may be related to messenger molecules called cytokines. 


Steroids like prednisone are not a primary treatment for RA due to potential severe side effects, but they can be used to reduce pain and inflammation. Hair loss is one of the associated side effects of using prednisone. If you are concerned about hair loss while taking medication, then you can talk to a dermatologist to weigh the skins and benefits of different treatment options.  

Other Autoimmune Disorders and Hair Loss 

Alopecia areata is a many common autoimmune disorder that causes hair loss. It is thought to be caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors. In alopecia areata, the immune system mistakenly attacks hair follicles, causing them to shrink and stop producing hair. 

Hair loss can occur anywhere on the body, but it is most common on the scalp. Alopecia areata can cause patchy hair loss, or complete hair loss on the scalp or body. In some cases, hair can regrow, but it can also fall out again. 

Alopecia areata is not contagious. There is no cure for alopecia areata, but there are treatments that can help hair regrow and reduce the severity of hair loss. 

Thyroid disease is a condition in which the thyroid gland does not produce enough or too much of the thyroid hormone. Thyroid hormone plays a role in many bodily functions, including hair growth. People with thyroid disease may experience hair loss, thinning, or changes in hair texture. 

Vitiligo is a condition that causes the loss of pigment cells in the skin. This can lead to white patches on the skin, hair, and body hair. People with vitiligo may experience hair loss from the affected areas. 

Alopecia universalis is a severe form of alopecia areata that causes complete hair loss on the scalp and body. Alopecia Universalis is rare, but it can be very distressing for those who experience it. 

What can I do to counter Rheumatoid Arthritis Hair Loss 

To counter hair loss caused by Rheumatoid Arthritis you can talk to a dermatologist or take hair growth vitamins such as folic acid and biotin. For alopecia areata, the Neofollics treatment is a promising option. Neofollics has a topical alopecia areata treatment that contains a combination of effective ingredients to stimulate hair growth and reduce inflammation. 

The Neofollics treatment for Alopecia Areata is an effective solution that enhances the overall condition of the hair and promotes hair growth. It is a potent combination of four products the Neofollics Shampoo, Tablets, Lotion, and Scalp Roller. The tablets ensure the supply of essential nutrients, while the shampoo and lotion work topically to stimulate hair growth with the help of hair growth-stimulating ingredients. The scalp roller enhances the absorption of the lotion into the skin. Within 90 to 180 days, this treatment reduces hair loss and improves hair density. 


In summary, Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) can occasionally lead to hair loss, often due to RA medications, particularly Methotrexate. Other autoimmune disorders like alopecia areata can also cause hair loss. To counter hair loss, consider consulting a dermatologist, taking hair growth vitamins, or trying the treatment for alopecia areata. While hair loss can be distressing, it is manageable with the right approach and guidance from healthcare professionals. 

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