What is Hair Loss (also called Alopecia)?
Everyone loses hair. It is normal to lose about 50-100 hairs every day. If you see bald patches or lots of thinning, you may be experiencing hair loss.
There are many causes of hair loss. Women may notice hair loss after giving birth. People under a lot of stress can see noticeable hair loss. Some diseases and medical treatments can cause hair loss.
The most common cause of hair loss is a medical condition called hereditary hair loss. About 80 million men and women in the United States have this type of hair loss. Other names for this type of hair loss are:
- Male-pattern baldness.
- Female-pattern baldness.
- Androgenetic alopecia.
What causes Hair Loss?
Both men and women lose hair. Every day about 50-150 hair strands are being naturally lost as a part of hair growth cycle. There are many reasons for hair loss and thinning. These include diet and nutrition, genetics, chronic illnesses, medications, lifestyle choices, hair styling choices and hair products used.
However the most common reason is plainly aging. Men are twice as likely to be affected. In men, alopecia may begin any time after puberty, so as early as in their 20’s and will be fully pronounced by their 40’s. Women usually start seeing hair loss much later in life, with majority after the age of 60.
Classification of Hair Loss in Men
The Norwood system of classification, published in 1975 by Dr. O’tar Norwood, is the most widely used classification for hair loss in men. It defines two major patterns and several less common types. In the regular Norwood pattern, two areas of hair loss gradually enlarge to produce recession at the temples and thinning in the crown. These regions coalesce until the entire front, top and crown (vertex) of the scalp are bald.
|Class I||Represents an adolescent or juvenile hairline and is not actually balding. The adolescent hairline generally rests on the upper brow crease.|
|Class II||Indicates a progression to the adult or mature hairline that sits a finger’s breath (1.5cm) above the upper brow crease, with some temporal recession. This also does not represent balding.|
|Class III||The earliest stage of male hair loss. It is characterized by a deepening temporal recession.|
|Class III Vertex||Represents early hair loss in the crown (vertex).|
|Class IV||Characterized by further frontal hair loss and enlargement of vertex, but there is still a solid band of hair across the top (mid-scalp) separating front and vertex.|
|Class V||The bald areas in the front and crown continue to enlarge and the bridge of hair separating the two areas begins to break down.|
|Class VI||Occurs when the connecting bridge of hair disappears leaving a single large bald area on the front and top of the scalp. The hair on the sides of the scalp remains relatively high.|
|Class VII||Patients have extensive hair loss with only a wreath of hair remaining in the back and sides of the scalp.|
What are the available treatment options?
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