Female pattern baldness

By Canada Cloud Pharmacy | Published Thursday 10 June 2021

It is common for women to experience hair loss after menopause. Female pattern baldness is a progressive type of hair loss that has a common occurrence. Typically, hair thins over the top portion of the head and towards the sides in this type. It is also called androgenetic alopecia and is a common type of hereditary hair thinning. Although hair may become relatively thin, women do not become 'bald' as in men.

Hair loss affects your confidence and emotional well-being. Let us discuss the causes and treatment options for this condition.

How does the female pattern baldness appear?

The female pattern baldness begins with hair thinning at the partition line, thereby widening it and diffuses further over the entire top portion of the head. Complete baldness is rare in women. Dermatologists classify female pattern baldness into different grades. These are:

  • Grade 1: Visible thinning at the front and crown portion of the head.

  • Grade 2: Hair becomes thinner in the portion seen in grade 1.

  • Grade 3: Complete hair loss in the area seen in grade 1.

What causes female pattern baldness?

The primary cause of female pattern baldness is strong family history. Genetic factor puts you at a greater risk of undergoing the process in which hair follicles become small, and the hair cycle shortens. However, this process is not intense in females, and hence you will not get complete baldness. The following factors may also trigger hair loss:

  • Hormonal imbalance in conditions such as polycystic ovarian syndrome.

  • Medical conditions such as obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, and raised levels of aldosterone.

How will doctors treat the condition?

Early diagnosis of female pattern hair loss is essential. Initially, you may try to change your hairstyle and hair-parting ways to hide the hair loss. The following treatment options are available:

  • Minoxidil, primarily discovered as a drug to treat high blood pressure, is approved to treat female pattern baldness. It is available as 2% topical lotion and 5% topical foam to be applied on the scalp. The drug stimulates hair growth. The common side effect includes scalp irritation.

  • Spironolactone is originally a diuretic (increases urine output). Oral tablets may help regrowth of hair and also stop the worsening of hair loss. It may cause loss of electrolytes and fatigue. It is contraindicated in pregnancy.

  • Some dermatologist may prescribe you finasteride (Proscar, Propecia) and dutasteride (Avodart). These drugs are used to treat prostate problems in men as well as hair loss in men. Side effects may include headaches, hot flashes, and loss of sexual desire.

  • The dermatologist may prescribe oral supplements of iron, biotin, and folic acid to promote hair growth.

  • A laser hair comb may promote hair growth.

  • Injecting platelet-rich plasma (PRP) may improve hair growth.

Female pattern hair loss is not a reversible condition. You need to adhere to long-term treatment to stop hair loss and stimulate new growth. Contact your dermatologist for the best advice.

 

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