Alopecia areata is sometimes referred to as “spot baldness” because it is a medical condition that causes hair to be lost from the head and/or body. While alopecia areata can cause hair loss almost anywhere on the body it is usually from the scalp. In 1-2% of cases alopecia areata can cause complete baldness on the head or spread over the entire body causing total body hair loss. Alopecia areata can be hereditary and is not under any circumstances contagious. Though not 100% proven, studies have shown that alopecia areata is more common in people with autoimmune diseases, but again this is not always the case.