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Women’s Hair Loss
|By : Johnny Mangiante , Toronto, Canada 25.8.2009 2 Comments Phone:1-866-669-6676 Fax:905-815-1745 Mail Now|
Women’s Hair Loss by Dr. Robert Jones
About 10% to 20% of the patients I see who are concerned with hair loss are female. For a woman, more so than for a man, hair is a defining point of personal style. For a female, losing hair is traumatic experience. Most of the women I see are close to tears when discussing their daily struggle covering up their thinning hair. Adding to the problem is the fact that many females feel they have been “brushed off” by their family doctors and dermatologists, who make them feel like they are worrying about something insignificant. Of course, what these physicians don't seem to realize is that the psychological damage caused by hair loss and feeling unattractive can be just as devastating as any serious disease, and in fact, can take an emotional toll that directly affects physical health.
Thinning and balding are mistakenly thought to be strictly male phenomena. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, 40% of women have visible hair loss by the time they are age 40. And, about 80% of females develop some recession of their hair lines as well, as part of the normal maturation process.
The American Hair Loss Association recognizes that hair loss in women is a serious life-altering condition that can no longer be ignored.
Female Pattern Balding (FPB) – A pattern on its own
There was a time when hair loss in females was classified as Androgenic Alopecia (MPB). However, we now know that female hair loss has its own causes and is classified as Female Pattern Baldness (FPB). This broader term encompasses many causes, some of which are linked to testosterone and some of which are not. The cause of Female Pattern Baldness is still not completely understood, but we know that many other types of enzymes, as well as hormone receptors and blockers, may be at work in women.
One clue that there is a true difference between male and female balding is the pattern in which the hair loss occurs.
Female Pattern Baldness occurs all around the top of the head, and it's diffuse, whereas men lose it on the temple, the crown, and the bald spot in the back. Not coincidentally, the hormone and enzyme receptor sites are also different in varying areas of the scalp – another reason doctors now believe the loss patterns are caused by different precipitating factors.
Another important difference is that while balding in men is almost always the result of a genetic predisposition coupled with age, in women, it can happen at any time. In addition, for women, underlying medical conditions can also be the cause of hair loss, even when true Androgenic Alopecia is the diagnosis.
Often these women are also suffering with polycystic ovary syndrome and sometimes their hair loss is the only obvious sign. As well, autoimmune disorders can cause a diffuse thinning in female hair.
Still others can develop a temporary hair shedding problem known as Telogen Effluvium – a change in the natural hair growth system that often follows childbirth, crash dieting, surgery, or a traumatic emotional event.
Also, thyroid disorders, anemia, even chronic illness or the use of certain medications, can also cause hair loss in women, and these problems often go undiagnosed.
When I first see female patients, I always rule out any possible medical problems before considering a transplant.
See full article here: Dr. Robert Jones M.D. Toronto Hair Transplant Center