Parry-Romberg syndrome (PRS)/Hemifacial atrophy (HFA)/Progressive facial hemiatrophy



Characterized by slow, progressive skin and soft tissue deterioration on half of the face (typically on the left side). The atrophy of the skin and soft tissue tends to last anywhere between 2 and 10 years before reaching a point of stability. In some cases, the atrophy stops before the entire face is affected. In mild cases, the disorder will only result in cosmetic problems.

Common Symptoms

Changes in skin color, facial bone or muscle loss, facial hair turning white and falling out, sunken-in appearance of the eyes and cheeks, shifting of the mouth and nose towards one side of the face, orthodontic issues, ophthalmologic problems, seizures, migraines, episodes of severe facial pain, facial bone loss, facial muscle atrophy, and retina and optic nerve issues.

Coexisting Diseases and Conditions

Alopecia, hyperpigmentation, vitiligo, seizures, and trigeminal neuralgia.

Risk Factors and Prevalence

Females are more likely to experience the condition than males. Those between the ages of 5 and 15 are most commonly affected. While no definitive cause is known, there are suspicions that Parry-Romberg syndrome is triggered by viral or bacterial infections, other autoimmune diseases, nervous system issues, brain or skull inflammation, and physical trauma.


  1. Article Sources
    1. Boston Children’s Hospital. (n.d.). Parry-Romberg syndrome: Boston Children’s Hospital. Boston Children’s Hospital.

    2. El-Kehdy, J., Abbas, O., & Rubeiz, N. (2012). A review OF PARRY-ROMBERG syndrome. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, 67(4), 769–784.

    3. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (2017, March 27). Parry-Romberg syndrome information page. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke.

    4. NORD (National Organization for Rare Disorders). (2020, April 6). Parry Romberg Syndrome. NORD (National Organization for Rare Disorders).