Mom's Social Media Post Leads to Son's Diagnosis

Lock Samples is fine, except for his Uncombable hair syndrome
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 7, 2022 1:21 PM CST
Updated Mar 12, 2022 12:40 PM CST
His Uncombable Hair Is an Actual Syndrome
Lock Samples, in a screen grab.   (YouTube/USA Today)

A mother's social media post that featured her young son's unruly hair has led to a surprise diagnosis: It turns out that Lock Samples of Roswell, Ga., has an extremely rare condition known as uncombable hair syndrome, reports Fox 5 Atlanta. The name is self-explanatory: Lock's hair sticks straight up, all the time, and it cannot be tamed. "I'd never heard of it," mom Katelyn Samples tells the Washington Post. "I kind of freaked out." Lock was diagnosed only after a stranger reached out to Samples to suggest he might have UHS. The condition is so rare that only about 100 known cases exist, per WebMD. It's characterized by dry, frizzy hair—usually straw-colored—and it typically shows up before age 3.

The good news is that it's not so serious, beyond the appearance of perpetual bed-head. Lock's hair doesn't cause him any pain or put him at risk for other problems, except for perhaps skin that's more sensitive than normal. And according to the National Institutes of Health site on rare diseases, UHS typically disappears when the patient hits puberty. Since the diagnosis, Samples and husband Caleb have launched an Instagram page about their 17-month-old son to raise awareness and, ideally, to help with understanding and treatment. And if Lock's case doesn't clear up, that's fine, too. "I love it," says his mom, per Fox 5. "We're so proud of it. I think it's cool to have something that lets you stand out. We really consider it a blessing." (More strange stuff stories.)

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