Background Traction alopecia associated with the nurse’s cap is a relatively common form of occupational hair loss.
Methods We examined 199 healthy South Korean nurses to assess the clinical and pathologic characteristics of traction alopecia caused by prolonged traction exerted at the point of attachment of the nurse’s cap.
Results Seven nurses (3.5% of 199) had hair loss at the pin site used to secure the nurse’s cap. The lesions were exclusively localized on the parieto-occipital scalp. Histopathologic findings revealed characteristic cicatricial changes which showed a marked decrease in the number of hair follicles without inflammation.
Conclusions Nurse’s cap alopecia is not an uncommon occupational alopecia, and appears to be a distinct clinical entity which should be distinguished from other forms of patchy alopecia.