Hair Colour Loss – Canities

Hair Colour Loss

Diseases/conditions featuring hair pigment reduction/loss include:


Canities (the ‘whitening of hair’) – a pigment deficiency frequently seen in middle-aged people of either gender. Canities is frequently noted as commencing at the anterior parietals and progressing over the vertices. Can be a genetically inspired.

Close examination of ‘greying’ hair usually confirms that it is an illusion caused by the presence of white amongst pigmented hairs.
A single grey hair often glistens resembling shot-silk, and reflects the colours of its immediate surroundings.  Canities may precede the development of snow-white hair.
This gradual progressive process of pigment (melanin) reduction/loss (currently thought to be associated with the presence of naturally ocurring hydrogen peroxide within the skin) may be accompanied by hairshaft thickening or thinning.