You or someone you know may have a particular head shape that resembles waves or grooves over your skull. Turns out there’s a scientific name for it. Muneeb Shah, DO, better known as Dr. Shah or @dermdoctor on TikTok, breaks down what this condition is and how it can appear, in a TikTok videogarnishing over 3.6 million views.
“This is cutis verticis gyrata, where the scalp develops folds that look like the brain,” explains Dr. Shah, pointing out different ways the condition can appear, from slight waves to full on brain-similar folds across the scalp. There are no particular causes of the condition alone, while it can be secondary symptom of another condition.
“It’s more common in men and usually completely harmless,” adds Dr. Shah. Roughly 1 in 100,000 men have cutis verticis gyrata according to review in Eplasty. CVG has a reported male-to-female ratio of 5: 1, according to DermNetwhich may be related to some women having longer hair to camouflage the condition.
While relatively harmless, Dr. Shah reveals that there are other conditions that can be present with CVG, including genetic conditions like cerebral palsy, epilepsy, seizures, and some eye issues like cataracts. The condition has also been linked to excess growth hormone production, resulting in increased bone size in the hands, feet and face, known as acromegaly.
CVG can typically be diagnosed by skin biopsy or an MRI scan. While there’s no real course of treatment for the condition, the best thing you can do is practice good scalp hygiene to prevent any dirt or infection of the scalp folds. There are also surgical options to remove the folds for cosmetic reasons.
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