Buzz around the movie Bhediya has brought into limelight a rare syndrome known as the werewolf syndrome. Werewolf syndrome which is medically known as Hypertrichosis, is a condition characterized by excessive hair growth anywhere on a person’s body. It can affect both women and men, but it’s extremely rare. The abnormal hair growth may cover the face and body or occur in small patches. Hypertrichosis can appear at birth or develop over time.
As is evident from the name, it causes extreme hair growth all over the body. Seventeen-year-old Lalit Patidar, from the small Nandleta village, was diagnosed with the condition at the age of 6. The photos of the teenager have been circulating on several social media platforms and show his face and hands completely covered in hair.
This is an extremely rare condition, and there is no concrete information on what triggers it, or who is susceptible. However, it is thought to be a genetic condition that presents at birth, according to a study published in the US National Institute of Health database.
Treatment methods include cosmetic procedures. Apart from that, laser hair removal, depilatory creams, and electrolysis are used to remove unwanted hair.
Long-term treatments include electrolysis and laser surgery. Electrolysis is the destruction of individual hair follicles with small electrical charges. Laser surgery involves the application of a special laser light over several hairs at one time. Even though it’s not a life-threatening condition, it can be inconvenient, and often those diagnosed face stigma.