The soft, thin hair that is sometimes found on the face, shoulders and back of newborns is called lanugo. All fetuses grow lanugo hair in utero. The hair generally vanishes between 36 and 40 weeks gestation. Thus, premature infants are more likely to have lanugo hair. After birth, this hair is usually rubbed off after two to four weeks and by 4 months of age at the very latest. If the hair persists or exists as a tuft of hair on the back, consult a physician. Do not attempt to remove hair from your newborn.
Observe the hair that is on your newborn.
If the hair is fine, wait a few weeks and continue to observe. It is likely that the hair will eventually fade away.
If the hair exists as a tuft or patch on the newborn's back, consult a physician immediately as this may be a sign of a neurological disorder.
If the hair is coarse or you are greatly concerned, consult your physician for further guidance.
- “Maternal and Child Health Nursing: Care of the Childbearing and Childrearing Family”; Adele Pillitteri; 2009