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Pityriasis Amiantacea

What is Pityriasis Amiantacea?

Pityriasis Amiantacea refers to a scalp condition characterized by hair that is stuck together with  yellow or sliver scales accumulated in a way that looks like the hair is glued down on the scalp. Pityriasis Amiantacea affects children more often than adults.

What is the cause of Pityriasis Amiantacea?

The cause is unknown, but it can develop in association with other scalp disorders such as tinea capitis, seborrheic dermatitis, or psoriasis.

What are the symptoms and findings?

Thick yellow and silver scales become adherent around the hair shafts which become pinned down on the scalp.

How is it diagnosed?3

The visual appearance is unique and a dermatologist usually make a visual diagnosis.  will test scalp and hair samples for mycology. There may even be a bacteria culture tested as well.

What tests are needed?

Samples of the scaly material is sometimes collected for a skin scraping to check microscopically for the presence of fungal organisms or send to a lab for a bacterial culture.

What is the expected duration?

Pityriasis Amiantacea can last for months to years.

How can it be prevented?

There is no known way to prevent it


The treatment can include topical steroid ointments, foam, liquid, or spray plus medicated shampoos, oral or topical antibiotics.

If a fungal scraping is positive, then an oral antifungal medication would be prescribed.

When to contact a professional

A dermatologist should be consulted when persistent thick patches of scaling and stuck down hair appear on the scalp.


Successful treatment and the recovery from Pityriasis Amiantacea can take a few weeks to a few years, but flare ups are common. Although it is known to be persistent and reoccurs often, eventually it usually goes away.

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