International Journal of Trichology International Journal of Trichology
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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 12  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 129-131

Scanning electron microscopy of subclinical gefitinib-induced hair changes

1 Department of Dermatology, Catholic and Federal University of Pelotas; Post-Graduation Program in Health Sciences, Catholic University of Pelotas, Rio Grande, Brazil
2 Post-Graduation Program in Health Sciences, Catholic University of Pelotas, Rio Grande, Brazil
3 Dermatology League, Federal University of Pelotas, Rio Grande, Brazil
4 Electron Microscopy Center, Federal University of Rio Grande, Rio Grande, Brazil
5 Center for Oncology - Ceron, Pelotas, Brazil

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Hiram Larangeira de Almeida
Rua Gonçalves Chaves 373, Pelotas
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijt.ijt_69_20

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Oral inhibitors of epidermal growth factor receptor may have a wide range of cutaneous manifestations. Hair manifestations are observed in 10%–20% of the patients. At the ultrastructural level erlotinib-induced hair changes were already described as acquired pili torti et canaliculi. We examined a 78-year-old female patient, with lung carcinoma, taking gefitinib for 15 months. The treatment has no side effects with good tolerance and tumor response. Although the patient had not observed any change on the hairs under the therapy, some specimens were obtained to be examined in natura with scanning electron microscopy. Under low magnification incipient grooving was observed on the hair surface, tortions or angulations of the hair shaft were not found. With higher magnifications the surface grooving was even more evident. Our findings show that gefitinib may cause subclinical hair changes, similar to those described at the ultrastructural level with erlotinib.

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