Although the issue is typically thought to be male-oriented, research shows that up to 40% of hair loss patients are women. This problem is a sensitive topic for both men and women and can cause a drop in self-confidence and even depression. Although both genders suffer from hair loss concerns, the underlying causes can vary greatly.
Unlike male hair loss, female hair loss is more typically tied to a medical condition. When a woman visits a hair restoration physician, she will likely be requested to complete preliminary blood work, analyzing possible causes such as an autoimmune disease or complications of the thyroid gland.
Diagnosing the cause of the hair loss can also include an examination of the follicles. If the size of the follicles vary in size, the cause could be genetic. Also known as androgenetic alopecia, about 30 million American women suffer from this hereditary condition that causes hair follicles to be replaced with thinner, finer hair. This can eventually lead to hair ceasing to replace itself altogether and contribute to female pattern baldness.
The medical conditions that could cause female hair loss include many issues both common and rare. Pregnancy, anemia, thyroid disorders, and many autoimmune diseases can all cause or contribute to hair loss. Hair loss can sometimes be a more outward sign of medical issues, making it very important for a hair restoration physician to perform a thorough examination and chemical analysis for female patients.
Chemical treatments to the hair or certain styles can also damage the hair and inflict hair loss. These causes can often be addressed and successfully treated, although skin irritation can also accompany these issues.
Determining the underlying cause of women’s hair loss is crucial to start treatment. While some conditions are easier to recover from than others, an experienced hair restoration physician can help female patients understand their available options.