As disconcerting as baldness can be for men, the emotional and social impact of hair loss on women can be devastating. Many of the women who come to see me feel frustrated, scared and alone. Fortunately, with modern techniques, most women can now be effectively diagnosed and treated.
A female patient that comes to see us is more likely to have significant anxiety about how hair loss is affecting her self-confidence, sexuality, career, dating prospects, or her attractiveness to her spouse.
While not generally talked about, female hair loss is very common and can be particularly damaging to a woman’s self esteem. More and more women are now recognizing the reality of hair loss and there is a worldwide trend toward women taking control and seeking treatment.
As in men, the most common cause of hair loss among women is inherited male pattern baldness, however the pattern in women is generally different from that seen in males.
The most common cause of hair loss in women is inherited androgenic pattern baldness however the pattern is generally different from what is seen in males. In addition to androgenetic alopecia, there are numerous other conditions that can lead to temporary or permanent hair loss in women. Such conditions include thyroid or other hormonal imbalances, low iron, nutritional deficiencies, auto-immune disorders, medication side effects, trauma to the hair or scalp, stress, and many others. General medical factors tend to be more of a consideration for women than for men and many female patients require blood tests or other investigations to rule out an underlying medical cause prior to proceeding with hair restoration.
While female pattern hair loss can start early, it often begins later than the male variety and is more frequently, but not always, associated with diffuse thinning over the entire scalp with sparing of the frontal hairline. Many women complain that the part in their hair seems to get wider, or that their pony tail feels thinner.
Women who present with hair loss are classified by the Ludwig Classification System:
shows widening of the central part
shows widening of the central part and loss of volume lateral to the part line
shows the development of a bald spot anteriorly
shows advanced hair loss
When a woman develops significant hair loss, it should be investigated with a complete history and physical examination and appropriate medical investigations. This often begins with a woman being proactive and bringing the problem to the attention of her family doctor, gynecologist or dermatologist. Conditions that may need to be ruled out include iron or thyroid deficiencies or other hormonal imbalances. Hair loss in women can also be associated with factors such as recent pregnancy, long-term pulling of the hair in pony-tails or tight braids, or use of harsh straightening techniques. While some causes of hair loss may require specialized treatment by an endocrinologist or medical dermatologist, the most common causes of female hair loss can often be effectively treated with medication or with surgical hair restoration offered at Follicle HT.
The only medical treatment that has demonstrated effectiveness in high quality clinical trials and has been approved by the FDA for treatment of female pattern hair loss is topically applied minoxidil (Rogaine®). Topical minoxidil has been shown to stimulate new hair growth and to stop hair loss in both men and women with pattern hair loss.
There has been increasing recognition of the role of hair transplant surgery for women. Modern hair transplantation involves redistributing hair from areas of the scalp where there is a relative abundance (such as the back of the head) to more cosmetically important areas where hair is noticeably thin. Hair restoration is performed as an outpatient using mild sedation and local freezing. Discomfort is minimal and serious complications are rare. When performed well on appropriately selected patients with realistic expectations, hair transplantation generally leads to very gratifying results with marked improvement in hair density.
In addition to scalp hair loss, modern hair transplant techniques can also be used to address hair loss in the sensitive eyebrow and eyelash areas (often caused by aggressive plucking) as well as to repair scars or hairline distortion caused by previous trauma or cosmetic surgery.
Surgical hairline lowering is a very robust procedure that shortens the vertical height of the forehead in order to establish more esthetically pleasing facial proportions. It leaves a faint scar in the hairline that is generally very difficult to detect. The main advantages of surgical hairline lowering over hair transplantation is that the results are instant, and we can achieve a hairline density that would not be possible with hair transplantation alone.
At Follicle HT, we use also alternative methods for hair restoration, such as injections technique. Injection therapy hair loss treatment is a non-surgical option for both men and women who are suffering from hair loss and thinning. Injections therapy stands for enriched cells and can help patients with genetic hair loss, androgenetic alopecia and stress-related hair loss. At Follicle HT we are cutting age as what it is available in medicine as part of hair restoration practice.
Your hair transplant journey begins with your decision to make a positive change.
At Follicle HT, our philosophy is that modern hair transplantation is a freedom granting procedure. We strive to help all our patients look and feel their very best by having the full range of options available.
Let’s open a discussion, see how we can help!