Androgenetic alopecia is a form of hair loss in both men and women. It is commonly known as male-pattern baldness in men.

In men, hair loss occurs in a defined pattern, beginning at the temple line. As time passes, the hairline reduces to form a characteristic “M” shape. Hair also starts thinning at the crown or near the top of the head, often leading to partial or complete baldness.

In women, androgenic alopecia is the hair starts thinning over the head (crown area) while keeping a frontal hairline. Also, it rarely leads to total baldness.

Are you suffering from androgenetic alopecia?

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Androgenetic alopecia is common in both men and women. Researchers are still unsure about the exact causes of this problem.

What are the possible causes of androgenetic alopecia?

Men can have androgenetic alopecia because of several medical conditions:

  • Coronary heart disease
  • Enlargement of the prostate
  • Prostate cancer
  • Insulin resistance disorders (such as diabetes and obesity)
  • High blood pressure (hypertension)

In women, androgenetic alopecia occurs due to an increased risk of polycystic ovary syndrome. This syndrome’s symptoms include an imbalance of hormones leading to acne, irregular menstruation, excess hair elsewhere on the body, and weight loss.

Some researchers believe that these disorders occur because of an increase in androgen levels, explaining why they only happen with androgen-linked hair loss. Some other factors related to the environment, hormones, and genetics may also contribute to androgenetic alopecia, but they remain unknown.

Treatments for Androgenetic Alopecia

Treatment for androgenetic alopecia includes both medicines and surgeries. In some cases, the use of medications can increase hair growth and reduce hair loss; these medicines include:

  • Minoxidil: Minoxidil makes your hair follicles enlarged and stimulates hair growth. It is available in foam or lotion for scalp application for people who are not ready to take any hair growth pills. However, it does have side effects like scalp irritation. People who have sensitive scalp may develop redness, itching, and flaking.
  • Finasteride: Usually, in the form of a pill, it targets the enzyme responsible for converting testosterone to DHT. Finasteride reduces the production of DHT, the hormone which is responsible for androgenic alopecia. After that, follicles that are very sensitive to the effects of DHT can function normally. It also prolongs the hair growth cycle and reduces hair shedding.

The main difference between them is that minoxidil is very effective on hair loss at the crown, whereas finasteride is effective on the entire scalp.

Hair transplant surgery is an effective treatment for androgenic alopecia. It is a surgical method of removing hair follicles from one part of the body called the donor site and planting them on the bald or balding side. It is a widely used method for hair restoration because of its long-lasting benefits.

Medications can reduce androgenetic alopecia. However, if your hair loss has lead to complete balding or patchy hair loss, then it is best to get a hair transplant for complete and best results.

Consult your doctor if you are suffering from androgenetic alopecia. The doctor will check your scalp and hairline and suggest the most suitable treatment of your hair loss.

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