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Androgenic or androgenetic alopecia is the most common form of hair loss in men (it happens to 80% of them). In women, however, it is not as common, affecting 20%. From the age of 50, we find that 50% of men begin to suffer from it, while it affects 40% of women after 70 years of age.
As the most common form of alopecia, it is widely spread among the world’s population.
Causes of androgenic alopecia
The primary cause of this type of alopecia is genetics. Genes that are mainly transmitted from the father may cause hair loss. It usually presents as the progressive loss of follicular units from the frontal area to the crown (the upper area where hair transplants are usually performed). Androgens, a hormone that men have to a greater extent than women, tend to affect the follicles through so-called miniaturisation, i.e., they make the hair follicles weaker, shorter and thinner, ultimately causing them to die. This disease can start at an early age, around 20, but it is more common after 50 years of age.
According to the Norwood-Hamilton scale, there are seven degrees of androgenetic alopecia, stage one being the mildest and stage seven the most advanced. Over time, if no action is taken, the person may reach the highest degree.
NORWOOD-HAMILTON Male Alopecia Scale
As one of the most studied and well-known alopecias, there are several ways to deal with this disease. These include medication options to healthier and more advanced treatments, without side effects.
The best hair treatments today are:
- PRP or Platelet Rich Plasma,
- Low level laser therapy.
All these treatments are helpful in trying to stop hair loss, but in the case of advanced androgenetic alopecia, the only solution to recover hair in the frontal and crown area will be hair transplantation.
The hair transplant will give us visible results between four to six months, depending on the particular case, and we will have definitive results after 12 months. On the crown, it can take up to 18 months.
If treatments are administered, they will be effective during their use and for a prolonged period afterwards. However, if they are discontinued, their efficacy will gradually diminish over time. With a hair transplant, there will be no loss of transplanted hair, but it is necessary to take care of the native hair, as it could fall out.
- Minoxidil. This can be consumed orally in pills or topically. The latter being the most frequent. It should be noted that, lately, sublingual minoxidil is coming into use.
- Topical and oral Finasteride.
- Vitamin complexes.
In the case of androgenetic alopecia, an evaluation by a trichologist, a hair specialist, will be required for a correct diagnosis. It will also be necessary to do a review from time to time following the hair transplant to observe the progress and recommend, if required, a follow-up treatment. As it is not associated with concomitant diseases, previous analytical tests are not usually required.
At Insparya, we are hair specialists with more than 10 years of experience in hair health and more than 35,000 satisfied patients. We are the hair clinic that focuses on people.