"one man displayed a head like a polished brown egg, without a hair on it, or on his face"

A woman with alopecia totalis
GNU Free Documentation LicenseA woman with alopecia totalis - Credit: Lovebug11768

Alopecia areata describes hair loss from part of the body, usually the scalp. It is believed to be an autoimmune disorder.

Complete loss of hair all over the body is Alopecia universalis. It is rare, with an incidence of one in 100,000 people. Alopecia totalis is a less severe form of the condition involving hair loss from the scalp alone.