The condition can affect anyone who engages in hair removal practices, but it is more common in people with tightly curled or coarse hair, which has a higher tendency to curve back toward and penetrate the interfollicular skin. It commonly affects African American men following facial hair removal in the beard distribution, where pseudofolliculitis barbae ensues.
L73.1 – Pseudofolliculitis barbae
9115004 – Pili incarnati
Differential Diagnosis & Pitfalls
- Bacterial folliculitis – Typically has more of an acute presentation. Positive cultures can be used to diagnose this condition, as bacterial cultures are typically negative in ingrown hairs.
- Miliaria rubra / pustulosa – Pustules would not be perifollicular in miliaria.
- Traumatic folliculitis – Transient inflammation secondary to irritation from shaving can result in traumatic folliculitis. However, this condition is more acute, with resolution of lesions within a few days.
- Acne vulgaris
- Other forms of folliculitis – viral (herpes, zoster), fungal (Majocchi granuloma, Pityrosporum folliculitis), parasitic (Demodex folliculitis), inflammatory (eosinophilic folliculitis)
- Inflamed or infected epidermal inclusion cyst
- Hidradenitis suppurativa