Hair Disorders

Hair Disorders

 

Hair Loss in Males and Females

Hair loss, also known as alopecia, is a common concern that affects both men and women. There are several types of hair loss, including;

  • Androgenetic alopecia The most common form of hair loss, also known as male-pattern baldness or female-pattern hair loss, is caused by genetic and hormonal factors.
  • Alopecia areata An autoimmune disorder that results in patchy hair loss.
  • Telogen effluvium Temporary hair loss caused by stress, illness, or other triggers, leading to an increase in the number of hair follicles entering the resting phase.
  • Traction alopecia Hair loss caused by tension or pulling on the hair, often resulting from hairstyles that put pressure on the scalp.

Treatments for Hair Loss

There are various treatment options for hair loss, depending on the underlying cause and severity of the condition. Some common treatments include;

  • Topical medications Minoxidil is an over-the-counter topical treatment that can help slow hair loss and promote hair regrowth.
  • Oral medications Finasteride is a prescription medication used to treat male-pattern baldness by blocking the hormone responsible for hair loss. Minoxidil can also be taken as an oral medication with evidence demonstrating higher efficacy than topical use.
  • Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy This treatment involves injecting a concentration of the patient’s platelets into the scalp to stimulate hair growth. PRP therapy can be effective in treating androgenetic alopecia and other types of hair loss.
  • Hair transplant surgery In cases of significant hair loss, hair transplant surgery can be an option to restore the appearance of a fuller head of hair. Melbourne Skin & Dermatology do not provide this service.

 

Hypertrichosis

Hypertrichosis is a condition characterized by excessive hair growth in areas not typically associated with significant hair growth. It can be congenital (present at birth) or acquired later in life.

 

Treatments for Hypertrichosis

Treatment options for hypertrichosis include;

  • Laser hair removal This method uses focused light to target and damage hair follicles, reducing hair growth over time.
  • Electrolysis Electrolysis involves using an electric current to destroy hair follicles, leading to permanent hair removal.
  • Depilatory creams These creams contain chemicals that help break down the hair shaft, making it easier to remove unwanted hair.
  • Shaving, waxing, or plucking These temporary hair removal methods can also be used to manage hypertrichosis.

 

Hirsutism

Hirsutism is a condition in which women experience male-pattern hair growth in areas like the face, chest, and back due to an excess of male hormones (androgens) or increased sensitivity to them.

 

Treatments for Hirsutism

 

Treatment options for hirsutism include;

  • Hormonal therapy Oral contraceptives or anti-androgen medications can help regulate hormone levels and reduce the growth of unwanted hair.
  • Eflornithine cream (Vaniqa) This topical medication helps slow down facial hair growth in women with hirsutism. It is applied directly to the affected areas and may be used in conjunction with other hair removal techniques.
  • Hair removal methods Laser hair removal, electrolysis, depilatory creams, and shaving, waxing, or plucking can be used to manage hirsutism, depending on individual preferences and the extent of hair growth.

 

When to See a Dermatologist

If you are experiencing hair loss, hypertrichosis, or hirsutism that is affecting your self-confidence or quality of life, it is important to consult a dermatologist. A dermatologist can evaluate your condition, determine the underlying cause, and recommend appropriate treatments to help manage your hair disorder. Early intervention can be crucial in preventing further hair loss and managing excessive hair growth effectively.

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