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Understanding The Link Between Hormones and Hair Loss

The American Academy of Dermatology estimates that 30 million women suffer from hair loss in the United States and the problem is on the rise. Although the problem of female pattern baldness is still largely misunderstood medical professionals do understand that the reason for hair loss in women is vastly different from men.

Men begin to bald as a result of hereditary factors and age. Balding in women can occur at any age and for a variety of reasons. Many times it is a symptom of an underlying hormonal health problem such as polycystic ovary syndrome. Although research on female hair loss is limited doctors do know it is a hormonal issue.

Experts say that thyroid disorders, anemia, chronic health problems, and certain medications can all contribute to female hair loss. The latest research says that women may have radically different enzymes, hormone and receptor blockers than men which is evident by the different balding patterns between the two sexes.

Treatment Options for Female Hair Loss

Female hair loss specialists at the American Academy of Dermatology urge women to get a proper diagnosis for the hair loss before treating it as routine hair loss. Since there are so many reasons for female hair loss, many of which indicate medical problems, it is important to get to the root of the issue that is causing the hair loss.

Women who suffer from hair loss should see a doctor who specializes in women’s hair loss. Doctors can perform a variety of blood tests and even a scalp biopsy to determine the cause. Since the problem is still grossly understood by the general medical community and compared to male pattern baldness it is important to get a second opinion before moving forward with treatment.

Women’s hair loss specialists also urge patients to become knowledgeable about hair loss in order to reduce chances of a misdiagnosis. Treatment options range from a change in lifestyle to surgery depending on the cause.

Treatment options for female hair loss include:

  • Minoxidil topical treatment
  • Aldactone androgen receptor
  • Tagamet histamine blocker
  • Estrogen/Progesterone
  • Oral contraceptives

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