In this condition the hair is dry, brittle, rough, nodular and loose in the follicle. The axillary and genital regions are those usually involved. The affected hairs present nodular masses or concretions arranged along the entire length of the shaft. These do not cover the whole surface but increase the thickness of the shaft appreciably. The masses are made up of grayish-yellow to yellowish-red, spherical or elliptical nodes that are firmly attached to the hair by a glutinous substance which, in reality, forms the bulk of the concretions. It also affords a home for the various bacteria that have been described as causal.
Etiology and Pathology. This condition was first described by Paxton in 1869, and although there is some difference as to later findings, the disease is no doubt due to a parasitic growth.
Prognosis and Treatment. Leptothrix is persistent and rebellious to treatment. Thorough shaving, followed by soap and water washing and the application of mercuric chlorid solution (1:500 to 1:2000) are the therapeutic means suggested.