The hair is most important to one’s self-esteem and identity. This is a universal symbol of beauty and vitality. In today’s era hair loss is one of the common problem affecting both men and women. Fortunately, there are effective preventive measures that one can take. If your progressing hair loss is taken care early then there are successful treatments. Hair restoration can be done using medical treatment as well as by surgery
It’s very normal for everyone to shed some hair each and every day, but excessive hair loss is a big concern for both men and women. It can start with a just a few hairs falling out, this excess hair falling off may later progress to baldness. Baldness refers to excessive hair loss from your scalp which can be either inherited or can be due to other reasons . Hair loss can also be a symptom of an underlying medical condition.
To understand why hair loss exists, let us first understand the life cycle of hair.
Our hair goes through cycles of growth and rest, but its course is different for each individual. In general, the growth period lasts for about two to three years, and the hair grows about a centimeter per month. After the growth phase starts receding, the resting phase starts which continues for about three to four months. At the end of the resting phase, the hair strands fall out and new ones begin to grow in its place, thus the growth phase starts again. This cycle may become disrupted due to many reasons. If you develop a hormonal imbalance or a specific irritation of the scalp, some hair follicles can potentially have a shorter growth phase and produce thinner and shorter hair shafts.
Hair loss is caused by many factors they differ in men and women. Till date, only a few of them are known for example effects of androgen, genetic factor, stress, crash diet, long-standing malnutrition, ferritin deficiency. In male front hair follicles are genetically predisposed to fall with the effect of testosterone. We cannot correct genetic factor but we can treat dietary deficiency and effect of the hormone. Any deficiency in this natural diet can lead to gradual thinning of hair .A proper diet of vitamins, minerals, protein, amino acids plays a major role in healthy hair growth.
1. Pattern baldness: This type of hair loss can occur in both the genders. In this type, the normal growth phase of two to three years is shortened and the hair is also not as thick or sturdy. With each growth cycle, hair becomes rooted more superficially and tends to fall out more easily during shampooing or combing. heredity plays a key role in pattern baldness.
2. Scarring alopecia: This type of hair loss is permanent and is characterized by inflammation of the hair follicle. hair to fall out. the new hair does not grow. usually associated with several skin conditions like lupus erythematosus or lichen planus.
3. Alopecia areata: autoimmune disorder few of them may have other autoimmune disorders like thyroid disease. hair generally grows back with treatment but may again fall out and regrow again.
4. Telogen effluvium:, hair suddenly and unexpectedly falls out. emotional or physical shock causes the hair roots to be pushed prematurely into the resting state, but generally within few months, the hair follicles become active again and new hair starts to grow.
5. Traction alopecia: pull your hair too tight when you style it. The roots tend to weaken and the hair can fall out.
1. Life style and food habit modification- Have good sleep and enough rest, Exercise daily to reduce stress. Avoid junk and unhealthy foods.Take a healthy diet that rich in protein,minerals and vitamins like B group vitamins, vitamin C, E and K. Hair growth is simulated by protein-rich diet including fish, eggs,dry fruits, nuts, yoghurt, milk and milk products.
2. Medical treatment-Food supplement, Minoxidil and Finasteride for men. Food supplement in a very low dose – in the form of cyclical treatment starts giving result in two months. Minoxidil promotes the growth of hair its effect appears in 3-4 months. Finasteride is a 5-alfa reductase inhibitor and it reduces the level of Dihydrotestosterone(DHT)/male hormones and helps in promoting hair growth. Its effect appears after 6 months.
3. PRP(platelet rich plasma) therapy- PRP stimulate stem cells in the bulb of hair root for growth.. PRP very effective treatment for hair thinning and generalized hair loss .
• Hair is an important structure cosmetically. It forms the framework of the face, how we look is largely decided by the appearance of hair.
• Hair loss causes significant psychosocial problems and impacts the men severely.
• Fall of hair up to 100 per day is a natural phenomenon, but when these hairs do not grow again because of some reason it results in baldness.
• Androgenetic – This is the most common cause of hair loss in men. Men carry genes for hair loss from either or both parents. Hormone testosterone activates the genetic sequence which is responsible for hair loss. The age of onset, its rate of fall and grade of baldness depends also on some other factors and may be different in different persons.
• Other causes are Severe illness, Malnutrition, Vitamin deficiency, improper lifestyle, stress and pollution.
Male pattern Hair loss is an inherited condition. It can be there even if Androgens are in normal range. It is aggravated if genes for baldness are inherited from mother or father. In men who develop MPHL, the hair loss may begin any time after puberty. The severity of MPHL increases with age and is a progressive condition.The clinical appearance is typical first thinning starts, the recession of temporal area followed by hair loss in the crown.
To prevent or decrease the rate of hair fall medical treatment is a must. But for a lost hair transplant is needed.
• Finasteride 1mg Per Day – It prevents the effect of Hormone DHT on the hair by blocking the enzyme 5 alpha reductase. It takes a year to show its result. Side effects of finasteride are rare and reversible for more detail you should consult your doctor.
• Minoxidil 5% – It promotes hair growth by increasing the duration of hair follicle growth cycle (Anagen). It is most effective if applied twice a day on the scalp. It takes 6-12 months before results are visible.
• LLLT – Low light laser therapy is also useful for hair growth. It works by photobiomodulation at the cellular level.
The exact mechanism by which minoxidil works is not known, but the drug is felt to increase the duration of the hair follicle growth cycle (called anagen). This improves the quality of the hair by increasing the diameter and length of fine, miniaturized hair. Minoxidil is most effective if applied to the scalp twice a day. The medication only works if it is in direct contact with the scalp (not the hair) and only works in areas where it is applied. Therefore, it is important to use the medication in the front part of the scalp if this is an area of thinning. When using minoxidil, it may take 6‐12 months before any results are seen. The majority of patients who see an effect from minoxidil experience a decrease, in the rate of hair loss. The drug also serves to thicken already existing hair, but most patients who do have results, grow only short, thin fuzz hair. It will not grow any new hair on a bald scalp. If minoxidil is discontinued, the effects of the drug wear off within three months and the previous pattern of hair loss resumes. When minoxidil is restarted, one generally does not regain the hair that was lost, so it is best not to stop and start the mediation, but to use it regularly. It is sold in concentrations of 5% for men and 2% for women. Only the 2% concentration of minoxidil has been approved for use in women.
Female patients are generally more sensitive to the side effects of minoxidil in decreasing blood pressure (hypotension) and may get light headache from the medication. Women also have an increased risk of developing allergic skin reactions (contact dermatitis).
Male pattern baldness or androgenetic alopecia is caused by the effects of the male hormone dihydrotestosterone (DHT) on genetically susceptible hair follicles that are present mainly in the front, top, and crown of the scalp (rather than the back and sides). DHT causes hair loss by shortening the growth (anagen) phase of the hair cycle, causing a decreased size or miniaturization of the follicles. The effected hair becomes progressively shorter and finer until it eventually disappears. DHT is formed by the action of the enzyme 5‐alpha reductase on testosterone. Finasteride is a drug that works by blocking the enzyme 5‐alpha reductase Type II that converts testosterone to dihydrotestosterone (DHT) in the hair follicle. Finasteride decreases both scalp and blood levels of DHT and its effect is felt to be related to both of these factors. Finasteride 1‐mg/day decreases serum DHT levels by almost 70%, it can hold on hair at any age, but works best to re grow hair in those who are younger. Occasionally we see patients in their 50s re‐grow some hair with finastride, but this is the exception rather than the rule. The benefits of finasteride will stop if the medication is discontinued. Over the 2‐6 months following discontinuation of treatment with finasteride, the hair loss pattern will generally return to the state that it would have been if the medication had never been used. Of course, if there is no hair in the area at all, the medication is not going to work. Since finasteride takes up to a year or more to exert its full effects, in either re‐growing hair or preventing further hair loss, patients must take finasteride for one year, or longer, before its effects can be accurately assessed. During the first six months, one may note some thinning of ones existing hair as the new growing hair replaces the miniaturized hair, so it is important to be patient during this period.
Side effects from finasteride at the 1‐mg dose are uncommon, and fortunately reversible. Of men taking finasteride 1mg, 3.8% experienced some form of sexual dysfunction verses 2.1% in men treated with a placebo. Finasteride and minoxidil work synergistically since their mechanisms of action are different. Minoxidil stimulates the hair follicle directly, but finasteride permits hair growth by blocking the negative effects of DHT. You can visit site–Here
Hair is considered as the essential part of the beauty of women ,so hair loss causes significant psychosocial problems and impacts on women personality. It can be emotionally crippling and disastrous for her self- esteem. Losing about 100 hairs a day is normal and this hair will get replaced naturally.But, if you are losing more than that, there could be abnormal hair loss. It is called androgenetic alopecia. Androgenetic alopecia causes women to lose their hair in a diffuse manner, meaning that hair begins to thin and shed uniformly across the scalp.
• Telogen effluvium is the most common cause of a diffuse loss of hair with thinning.
• Nutritional factors play a major role in hair loss. Ferritin deficiency is one of the main cause of hair fall in Indian women.
• Female pattern baldness (FPHL) similar to male pattern baldness, there is more loss of hair at the top of scalp
• If the DHT is increased in the female body that will cause Female androgenetic alopecia. (FAGA) For women, androgenetic alopecia may be undetectable for quite some time.
• Hormonal disorders like thyroid dysfunction, PCOD etc.
• Traction alopecia: It is a condition in which constant force is applied to hair. Eg. hair loss along the hairline due to prolonged wearing of tight ponytails.
• Alopecia areata: There are several patches of hair loss in the scalp.
• Cicatricial alopecia: hair loss occurring after any injury, like burns, cuts and bruises or scars from physical or chemical traumas, any scar or incision site after a cosmetic or corrective surgery.
• Use of certain medicines like anticancer drugs.
• Stress: Stress plays a major role in hair fall. When our stress level is increased our body release negative hormones and they affect our body and also hairs.
• Trichotillomania –It is a psychiatric obsessive-compulsive disorder in which women start pulling her hair leading to patchy hair loss in front and top of the head. It needs psychiatric treatment.
FPHL is very different from men. Hair loss is mostly restricted to front and top with thinning but the hairline is maintained. The typical pattern of hair loss is an area of diffuse central thinning, classically presenting with increasing part width. There is no temporal recession but sometimes thinning may be present. Ludwig classifies female pattern hair loss in 3 grades.
• Specialized Treatment for Women:
USFDA approved medical treatment for hair loss in females – Minoxidil 2% or 5% and LLLT
This treatment controls hair fall and increases the thickness of hairs. Also, it helps the growth of villous hairs.
Platelet rich plasma, or often termed as PRP , is concentrated blood plasma that contains approximately five times the number of platelets found in normal circulating blood In addition, it contains platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF), vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), transforming growth factor (TGF) and other bioactive proteins that aid in wound healing and possibly hair growth.
The function of platelets is to promote healing and aid in the clotting of blood at the site of a wound. Platelets contain growth factors that promote regeneration of the cells in the body. The benefits of platelets and the regeneration of tissue is widely known and accepted in medical literature, but its usage in recent medical conditions is currently being studied.
The idea behind PRP therapy is that by increasing the platelet count in a wounded area, the body’s healing capacity in that area would be accelerated. It is also proposed that PRP can actually stimulate the stem cells (dermal papilla) of the newly transplanted hair follicles
The injection of platelet rich plasma (PRP) is a technique using the body’s own blood to heal itself. Doctors incorporate its use for the growth of thinning hair, transplanted hair, and wound healing. Many patients have benefited from this form of treatment.
If the hair follicles or hair roots are healthy, the growth of the hair is healthy. Hair follicles survive on the nutrition they get from blood supply. If we introduce platelets by administering platelet rich plasma (PRP) in the area of damaged hair follicles, it amplifies the body’s naturally occurring wound healing mechanism. Some doctors around the world believe PRP can be used to stimulate the growth of hair follicles preventing hair loss.
First, approximately 20-30ml of blood is collected from your vein. It’s very similar to having a routine blood test performed at your doctor’s clinic. The blood is collected in a special PRP tubes. The tube is then placed in entrifuge machine to spun for 15 minutes. after centrifuge blood components are separated. The concentrated platelets are separate from your normal whole blood. The PRP that contains abundant growth factors and stem cells is now activated with activator and this activated PRP is injected into the scalp
There are many benefits of using PRP treatment to promote healing for hair growth. Highly concentrated growth factors in the form of platelets have been shown to generate new hair growth, thicken thinned out hair, and make hair transplants grow thicker and healthier.
However, not everyone is an ideal candidate to undergo this procedure. Patients who have an active infection in the scalp, history of a viral infection like shingles, diabetes, any clotting disorder, or patients who are on blood-thinning medications like aspirin and immunosuppressive drugs like cyclosporine are not candidates for this procedure.
Also, if hair follicles are completely lost, this procedure is less likely to help patients. Patients may need to opt for hair transplant surgery.
The whole procedure takes around one hour. Since an inflammatory process is initiated at the wound site, there may be mild pain or discomfort felt by the patient at the site where PRP is injected. Patient are not advised not to take any anti-inflammatory medication since it may interfere in the natural healing process of PRP. Patients generally have to receive this treatment multiple times before they can see any results. However, some patients may only have to receive this therapy once a year.
The injected area may have mild swelling, it may even be tender to touch. Swelling may go away in few hours after the procedure while tenderness may go away in a couple of days. There is a possibility of the area getting infected, but this is rare.
PRP does not pose any danger of allergy, hypersensitivity, or foreign-body reaction and it is a safe choice for many patients.
Prognosis is generally good, but it varies from person to person. Most of the clinics practicing this therapy have reported almost 80% success rate.