Acne Keloidalis Nuchae (AKN), also known as ‘Acne keloidalis’ or ‘Folliculitis keloidalis,’ is a long standing hair follicle disease with bumps and scars on the skin of the back of the head and neck. AKN occurs almost exclusively on the occipital scalp (back portion of the head), of mainly men of African descent ages 13 to 25.
Who Gets AKN and How Does One Get It?
Acne keloidalis nuchae is a destructive and painful scarring and irritation of the scalp. Researchers show that Acne Keloid Nuchae affects more men of African decent because they are more likely to develop tightly curled coarse hair which is kept short. It is the curl on the skin of the scalp which causes irritation. Ultimately, through this irritation, follicultis develops, ultimately swelling the follicles then creating lesions and keloid-like scarring.
Cutting the hair short is usually not the issue, but if the hair is short and shaved, this would cause some concern since the tips of the hair have to be close to the skin for it to become ingrown.
What Happens If I Have Acne Keloid Nuchlae?
AKN can cause painful, severe and permanent scarring since the disease allows scars to not only prevent hair growth in the areas where they form, but also has an ability for disfiguration. For hair that manages to grow in these areas, they often become ingrown or broken. In more severe cases, the hair can often be permanently lost in areas of widespread inflammation
Although AKN is a chronic and serious condition, it is not fatal. Although the keloid-like scarring is benign, the discomfort associated with the development of this condition can interrupt daily life, both emotionally and physically.
Treatment for AKN
Unfortunately, folliculitis keloidalis often persists despite a variety of treatments. The following measures can be helpful:
- Oral tetracycline or antibiotics for secondary infection
- Three month course of clindamycin and rifampicin antibiotics
- Topical steroids
- Steroids injected into the lesions (intralesional injections)
- Oral isotretinoin
- Surgery (i.e.: surgery removing all affected skin area)
- Laser excision or vaporisation
Despite the list of treatments, the most effective method to completely remove AKN is surgery. Dr. Umar specializes in various surgical techniques he has developed for removing AKN, while minimizing scarring. View our video and photo galleries for examples of AKN surgical cures using his advanced method and techniques.
Other names of Acne Keloidalis Nuchae (AKN):
Dermatitis Papillaris Capillitii
Folliculitis Keloidalis Nuchae
Lichen Keloidalis Nuchae
Folliculitis Nuchae Scleroticans