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Category Archive for Female Hair Loss


I’ve Had Alopecia for 15 Years

I suffer from hair loss for more than 15 years ( I am 36 years of age, female). I have been to a specialist here, in Uk, just to be told that I suffer of alopecia (no reason for it)and there is no treatment for it. Hence i never tried anything…But in the last 2 years the situation has worsen and I became desperate. Could you give me an advise, please?

Rogaine (minoxidil) works in about half of the women who use it. Try it, but apply it twice a day and keep on it for at least 6 months to see if you get the benefit.


Hair Loss from Hair Tracks

I am a 42 year old female and I was recently diagnosed with graves disease and i had iodine treatment to destroy the hyperthyroidism and I went into hypothyroidism. I wore tracks in my hair and noticed my scalp was itching and after taking the hair tracks out I noticed balding where the tracks were and my hair falling out. Will I get my hair back?

Traction alopecia, which appears to be the diagnosis, needs a recovery period in which you must wait up to a year or so to determine if the hair will grow back. I would not do anything but wait and do not use anything that will pull on the hair, or it will just make the situation worse. I am assuming that the hair loss reversed when you got control of your thyroid problem.


Native American Indian Female with Thinning Hair

I’m a 50 year old Native American Indian lady living in Phoenix, Arizona and would like to know why my hair is already turning white and thinning out. I’m thinking that I may have an illness that I don’t know about. Because it seem like I’m sick all the time. I am also going through my menopause so I don’t know if that’s triggering it.

I have gone to see the doctors and they taken blood tests, but keep telling me there’s nothing to be alarm about. But the point is I’m so wary about this matter and I see alot of the people in my age group that still have a mopful of dark hair and not going gray/white. Not only this, it seems like my face has age about 10 years older within the last year or two. Am I thinking (stressing) about this to much? What type of herbs or shampoo will help my hair? Or, am I lacking some type of vitamin deficiency? I don’t mind the aging gracefully, but not this fast. Please, let me know. Thank you.

I would have to write a book on what may be the cause of your hair loss. The fact that you feel sick is an indication that something may be wrong with you (such as hypothyroidism, eczema, alopecia, dieting, malnutrition, autoimmune, drugs, infection). Considering that you are an American Indian, genetic hair loss is uncommon, so I would start looking for a medical condition. Also, I would suggest that you get your hair and scalp mapped out for miniaturization, as that may point to genetic hair loss in the case that you are the exceptional American Indian with a genetic cause of it. In non-American Indians, hair thinning is present in almost half of females going through menopause.


Female Hair Loss from Stress

I am a 44 year old female. Over the past 4 years, I have experienced a series of extremely traumatic events (far above average) resulting in a variety of stress related symptoms. Approximately 18 months ago, (almost overnight) I began to notice a significant amount of hair loss. It only caught my attention at first because of the dramatic increase of hair in the tub after showering. I was put on thyroid medication approximately one year ago (my levels were normal but my MD thought the hair loss might be related to a thyroid condition.) This did not seem to be effective. At this point, it seems the hair loss (although all over to some degree) is primarly at the temples / sides of the head, where the hair is now patchy and thin, with visible bald areas. Could this be a reaction to the years of extreme stress? I am at a loss as to what to do next, and so is my physician.

Stress is a major cause of hair loss in women with a genetic predisposition to it. You need to have a complete medical work-up to try to identify diseases or conditions that cause hair loss (such as hypothyroidism, eczema, alopecia, dieting, malnutrition, autoimmune, drugs, infection, genetics, etc). Then you need to have your hair mapped out for miniaturization to determine if your have the genetic patterns of female hair loss. The following laboratory tests are often useful if underlying problems are suspected: Estradiol, FSH, LH, SHBG, Prolactin, T4, TSH, ANA, Iron, TIBC, Ferritin, Free and Total Testosterone. Show the information from this blog to your doctor to help him point to the various medical tests he should perform.


Thyroid Medication and Female Hair Loss

I am a 29 year old woman. 5 years ago a number of symptoms creeped up on me (this started 1 year after i stopped ortho-tri cyclen). The symptoms got progressively worse over the years. They included: hair loss, decreased metabolism (irregular bowel movement inspite of high fibre diet), cold intolerance, fuzzy headedness (lack of concentration), depression, dry skin, increasingly recurrent mild yeast infection.

My TSH was normal, so thyroid probs was ruled out. 2 months ago, i went to another doctor who listened to my symptoms and put me on synthroid. He thought i may be suffering from sub-clinical hypothyroidism. All my symptoms (except hair loss) have since compeletely clerared up … (i feel like i was given a new lease on life …and feel normal for the 1st time in years).

I am hopeful that the medication will resolve the hairloss as well, however i am worried since i have a lot of Hair miniaturization all over my head including back , side and top but most pronounced on top of my head and temples and sides. Do you think that thyroid problems could also cause miniaturization and i should wait and see if the problem gets helped. Or should i be starting another regimen…

Also , where can i get the desitometer measuring the progress or worsening of hair miniaturization, to figure out if my hair is improving with thyroid meds or not…

Thanks in advance !!

Female hair loss precipitated by birth control pills and thyroid disease in women programmed for genetic hair loss may not reverse. Only time will tell you.

The best place to get your own densitometer is at Radio Shack or a local small electronics shop. Look for something they call a hand microscope which should sell for around $15. Someone other than you will have to do the measurements at the same place each and every time you are examined and plot it out over time, possibly monthly.


Hair Transplants in Women vs Men

I’m a 45 yr old woman who has been slowly losing my hair over the past 20 years. Currently, I have the typical female baldness (not completely bald, but lots of scalp showing through) just past the hairline. Blood tests revealed no thyroid issues, but I’m well on my way to menopause as far as hormone levels. I’m healthy as far as diet and exercise, have normal stressors in life, take no meds. There is no history of female baldness in the family, but my mother has always had thin, fine hair. I’m about ready to go the transplant route, but keep reading that it could be hormonal or vitamin based. My ob/gyn and dermatologist are both at a loss to explain it as other than bad luck. How do I know for sure if I’ve exhausted every avenue before resorting to transplants?

You must have the complete work-up of tests (see Female Hair Loss for info) and then get a good, caring, competent, and ethical doctor who understands when a transplant can help and what it will do for you. Setting realistic expectations is critical. Woman’s hair loss is very different than men’s hair loss with regard to the judgments and artistic distribution for transplantation. I use the metaphor that it is easier to make grass grow on an empty lot, than it is to make a green lawn even greener. Bald men scalps are like the ‘empty lot’ , so any hair artfully placed and distributed is easily appreciated. Women are more like the green lawn and making it greener is difficult as expectations may not relate to the reality of what the transplant will bring. That is why a choice in the correct hair transplant surgeon is so critical. You must be confident that the surgeon is going to give you transplants because it will help you, not just to put money in his/her pocket. Like all industries, the axion: ‘Let the Buyer Beware’, prevails.


Female Thinning Hair, Propecia for Women?

I am a 57 year old female and lost almost all my hair on the top. I have some hair on the lower back part. Right now I am using Toppik and Couvre to hide my bald spot, but it is very hard. Can I use Propecia? Can women take it? My 25 old daughter, a 4th year medical student, has the same problem. She has seen many doctors (including Cleveland Clinic) but nothing helped. She applies 5% Minoxidil, and takes some Bl. Pr. medicine everyday but still she is losing hair fast. One doctor at IU Med School told her that she is not a good candidate for transplant therapy.

Can you help us?

If you want I can send our pictures to you.

There are many causes for women’s hair loss, such as hypothyroidism, eczema, alopecia, dieting, malnutrition, autoimmune, drugs, infection, genetics, etc. Since your daughter has seen many physicians, I assume that both of you have had numerous blood tests to rule out the many causes. Biopsies may be a next step, but your scalp and the scalp of your daughter should be mapped out for miniaturization. It would be interesting to see if the ‘map’ is similar for miniaturization by distribution, which would suggest genetic causes. Propecia is a very bad idea and not recommended for women. A biopsy of the scalp can evaluate if there is any inflammation process going on. If you would like, you may email your pictures to the address on the Contact page or come in person for a free consult to one of our offices in Los Angeles or San Jose, California.


Iron Levels and Hair Loss

Dr Rassman,

I am a 27-year-old female who has experienced a gradual overall thinning for the past 10 years. It is now fairly severe. I have always had low iron levels and saw a hematologist for over a year. My ferritin levels have hovered between 14-35, despite taking a 325mg ferrous gluconate supplement daily.

My ferritin is currently 14 and my hematologist says that since the laboratory test range is 10-150, my levels aren’t so bad; that it would take anemia to cause hair loss. My B12 is also in the low range - 325 on the 200-1200 normal zone. I feel that I must not be absorbing iron if the levels haven’t changed despite taking a supplement and I am frustrated by wasting more time without being able to rule this out as a source of the thinning. My two younger brothers have male pattern baldness but I am loathe to accept genetics are to blame for me too…

My question is: how low do iron levels have to be to be considered a legitimate cause for hair loss? And how soon would regrowth occur after normal levels are restored?

Thanks so much for your time.

Anemia is a very broad topic to tackle. There are many causes of anemia, like microcytic anemia and macrocytic anemia. Microcytic anemia is caused by iron deficiency, thalassemia, and various chronic disease. Macrocytic anemia is caused by folate and B12 deficiency. There is no cut off level of iron that one can define as the starting point for hair loss. Ferritin & Vitamin B12 deficiencies may produce hair loss and anemia and they may accompany other vitamin deficiencies including the entire B group [Vitamin B1 (thiamin),Vitamin B2 (riboflavin), Vitamin B3 (niacin), Pantothenic acid, Biotin, Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), Folic acid (folate), Vitamin B12 (cyanocobalamin)].

Have you tried to take iron with vitamin-C? Sometimes that may help to increase absorption of iron. Liver and red meat have high iron levels. Your doctor may have evaluated your GI tract for mal-absorption problems leading to some malnutrition or other vitamins and nutrient deficiencies, each which may contribute to hair loss. If the normal level of iron is restored, it may take a few months before you can see noticeable regrowth of hairs.


Are Antibiotics Causing My Hair Loss?

I am 16 years old / female and I am having problems with my hair. My hair used to be thick and had volume but now I find my hair falls out easily in the shower and while it is wet, all u have to do is run your fingers through it and hair comes out. My hair is thinning and does not grow as thick. I am on anitbiotics for pneumonia and have been for a year or so now… could that be the reason why? And if not… than what is?

If you have a chronic illness and the antibiotic is for treating it, the illnesses itself could cause hair loss. Any form of medication may have hair loss as a side effect and without knowing what drugs you are taking, I can not tell you its side effect concerning hair loss. Research your antibiotic on Google for potential hair loss side effects.


Hairline Lowering Doctor Recommendation in Maryland?

I am a 24 year old female and I am interested in having my hairline lowered. Could you recommend any surgeons in the Maryland/Washington DC area? Thanks !!

Dr. James Vogel is a fine doctor in your area and does hair line lowering procedures in his plastic surgery practice as a matter of routine. He can be reached at