Articles Tagged with: hereditary hair loss
hair loss myths

4 Hair Loss Myths Everyone Should Ignore

hair loss mythsHair loss myths seem to circulate around social media, no matter how much concrete and credible information is readily available. Unfortunately, the popularity and sheer temptation of self-diagnosis is difficult to overcome. Once you notice those few extra strands on your pillow or in your shower drain, placing blame on genetics, stress, diet, haircare or an underlying illness can be your initial (and often accurate) reaction. While these are the most common hair loss causes, outlying and unrelated factors are frequently accused of initiating excessive thinning or shedding.

Here are four hair loss myths that you should never believe:

  1. Women Don’t Have Genetic Hair Loss

Not only is female pattern hair loss (FPHL) a result of genetics, it’s one of the most common causes of women’s hair loss. According to the American Hair Loss Association, women account for nearly 40 percent of all hair loss victims. Keep in mind, androgenic alopecia – the clinical terminology for hereditary hair loss – does not affect men the same way it does women. Male-pattern baldness is more targeted with noticeable balding around the hairline, temples or crown. FPHL is more diffuse, causing a general thinning across the scalp. One of the first signs of FPHL is a widening part, though individual cases vary.  

  1. Tanning Causes Hair Loss

Contrary to popular notion, UV radiation is not linked to hair loss. This myth is rooted in the misconception that sunshine damages hair follicles to the point where they shut down and fail to cycle through the hair growth stages as usual. While excessive sun exposure could lead to damage, breakage and skin cancer, you don’t have to worry about it affecting the volume of your hair.

  1. Balding is Linked to High Testosterone

At the pinnacle of all hair loss myths is the belief that balding men have more testosterone running through their systems. Although inaccurate, it’s easy to see where this fallacy lies. Dihydrotestosterone, or DHT, is a derivative of testosterone that is scientifically linked to hair loss. Researchers say that the amount of testosterone isn’t the issue, but rather the level of DHT fastening to hair follicle receptors in the scalp. Typically, due to genetics or other hormonal changes, hair follicles develop a sensitivity to DHT and begin to miniaturize. This process shortens the hair growth cycle and eventually causes them to stop growing new hairs.

  1. Hair Loss is Inherited from Your Mother’s Side

If you tell a friend you’re worried about going bald, they’ll probably tell you to check your maternal grandfather’s locks first. However, your mother’s side of the family isn’t the only piece of your genetic makeup that puts you at a greater predisposition of developing androgenic alopecia. You’re just as likely to inherit hair loss from your father’s side, so consider all relatives before you stress about the future.

Only qualified hair loss specialists and dedicated physicians can formally diagnose a hair loss condition. At the Hair Transplant Institute of Miami, we invite those concerned about thinning or shedding to undergo a comprehensive hair loss evaluation at our South Florida clinic. To schedule an appointment, call 305-925-0222 today.

New Hair Loss Gene Discovered- APCDD1

New Research Reveals Over 250 Genetic Signals for Hair Loss

New Hair Loss Gene Discovered- APCDD1While male pattern baldness affects most older men, research on genetic predisposition to baldness has been minimal – until now. In a recent study published in the journal PLOS Genetics, a Scottish research team from the University of Edinburgh found nearly 300 genetic ties to hair loss, helping identify potential chromosomal markers of male pattern baldness.

The study analyzed over 52,000 male participants between the ages of 40 and 69-years-old. This is the largest genetic report on male pattern baldness to date.

“We identified hundreds of new genetic signals,” said Saskia Hagenaars, co-lead author of the study, in a news release. “It was interesting to find that many of the genetics signals for male pattern baldness came from the X chromosome, which men inherit from their mothers.”

Based on the genetic variants between a discovery sample (40,000 subjects) and a target sample (12,000 subjects) that distinguished patients with no hair loss and severe hair loss, the team developed an algorithm to forecast who may develop male pattern baldness. The higher the patients genetic (polygenic) score, the more likely they were to suffer from male pattern baldness. Among participants with a sub-median score, 14 percent showed severe hair loss while 39 percent had no hair loss. Meanwhile, 58 percent of patients who scored within the top 10 percent showed moderate-to-severe hair loss.

genetic hair loss

Fig 3. Distribution of hair loss by male pattern baldness polygenic score decile in the independent sample. Source: PLOS Genetics

For the most part, the genes identified are associated with hair structure and development. These findings could support early diagnosis and better treatment of male pattern baldness in the future.

 “We are still a long way from making an accurate prediction for an individual’s hair loss pattern,” said principal investigator Dr. Riccardo Marioni. “However, these results take us one step closer.”

As noted in the report, male pattern baldness affects approximately 80 percent of men by age 80. Balding can lead to substantial emotional issues, including diminished self-confidence, social isolation and depression. Past research has also linked baldness to an increased risk of prostate cancer and cardiovascular disease.

Download and read the full study here.

Ludwig Classification

The 4 Most Common Hair Loss Conditions

Ludwig ClassificationHair loss conditions do not discriminate. Despite how often we hear about male pattern baldness, women account for 40 percent of cases. Overall, 3 million Americans suffer from androgenetic alopecia, or hereditary hair loss, annually.

According to the American Hair Loss Association, approximately 95 percent of men’s hair loss is due to male pattern baldness, and 25 percent see symptoms before they reach 21-years-old.¹ Two-thirds of men experience some degree of loss by the age of 35. And by the time they hit 50, 85 percent of men see significant thinning related to androgenetic alopecia.

Meanwhile, half of all women experience thinning or shedding by the time they reach 50-years-old, per the North American Hair Research Society.² While female pattern hair loss (FHPL) can begin any time after puberty, most women either see thinning in their teens and 20s or in their 40s and 50s.

The medical community continues to work toward cutting edge treatments that satisfy each of the leading hair loss conditions, but it’s important to remember how much these disorders vary. Not only are men and women affected differently, but another three major hair loss conditions exist beyond androgenetic alopecia.

Alopecia Areata

Around 200,000 cases of alopecia areata are diagnosed per year. Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disorder characterized as sudden bald patches that appear almost overnight, sometimes resulting in complete bodily hair loss. Although there is no cure for alopecia areata, patients are wise to address any underlying conditions related to their immune systems. Topical treatments can also help alleviate some of the hair loss associated with alopecia.  

Telogen Effluvium

Another leading hair loss type is telogen effluvium (TE), or stress-induced hair loss, which affects around 200,000 people in the United States per year alone. After a strenuous life event, hair follicles react to external strain by going into shock. While normal hairs enter their active and resting phase on a continuous cycle, patients with telogen effluvium have follicles pushed into their resting state prematurely. A few weeks or months later, patients may notice their hair falling out in clumps because the follicles aren’t active to reproduce recurrently lost hairs. Fortunately, telogen effluvium is a reversible condition that rarely requires aggressive medical intervention. However, TE can become a chronic ailment if the underlying causes of stress aren’t addressed properly. Chronic telogen effluvium most often affects women between 30- and 60-years old, per the American Osteopathic College of Dermatology.³ However, patients rarely see total hair loss during these fluctuating periods of on-and-off symptoms.

Traction Alopecia

Traction alopecia occurs when hairs are externally pulled out of the follicle from tight hairstyles or as an active response to anxiety or depression. Cornrows, tight braids and hair pieces can trigger traction alopecia symptoms, which then subside when hair is loosened and follicles begin to heal. For individuals suffering with mental disorders such as depression, a combination of therapy and counseling can provide a new outlet to minimize purposeful traction alopecia and other self-harm behaviors.

 

If you are experiencing symptoms of hair loss beyond the normal 50 to 100 strands per day, it’s time to contact a hair restoration specialist. At your consultation, Dr. Paul Rose and Dr. Bernard Nusbaum of the renowned Hair Transplant Institute of Miami will examine you for the common hair loss conditions. From there, we discuss possible underlying causes and recommend treatment, if necessary. As a leading hair loss clinic, we pride ourselves on active listening, open communication and optimal treatment plans. Call us today at 305-925-0222 to schedule your appointment.

 

¹ http://www.americanhairloss.org/men_hair_loss/

² http://www.nahrs.org/PatientInformation(FAQs)/FemalePatternHairLoss(FAQ).aspx

³ http://www.aocd.org/?page=TelogenEffluviumHA

What Causes Hair Loss

What is Hereditary Hair Loss?

What Causes Hair LossThe majority of people notice hair loss as they age – beyond the standard 50-100 strands per day. Unfortunately, forecasting future hair loss because a grandparent or parent suffers from shedding or thinning locks isn’t always possible. In some cases, when hair loss takes shape, the condition is due to genetics. Male-pattern baldness and female-pattern baldness manifest in different ways, but both are classified as heredity conditions. However, predicting the severity of your impending hair loss can’t be done through looking at old photographs.

Hereditary Hair Loss

Hereditary hair loss typically begins in 20s and 30s. For women, the most apparent hair loss happens after menopause. Female-pattern hair loss is typically referred to as androgenetic alopecia, which is technically the same categorization as male-pattern baldness. However, male-pattern baldness takes a characteristic shape, which is why such phrasing is more commonly used.

Hair loss after a stressful life event or during pregnancy is short-term and therefore, not due to genetics. But hereditary hair loss that starts widespread and takes an obvious form is permanent.

Solutions

There are many treatments for hereditary hair loss, including minoxidil (Rogaine) and Finasteride (Propecia), but both are temporary solutions. Once use is discontinued, the regrowth effects disappear and patients lose the hair retained or restored from the medications.

The only permanent solution for hereditary hair loss is surgery. In the past, hair restoration surgery transplanted plugs of skin with up to 15 hairs. We do the procedure differently at the Miami Hair Transplant Institute through modernized techniques to achieve the most natural-looking results.

One such technique known to enhance results is Mosaic Hair Restoration. Through this process, qualified surgeons design the recipient site to mimic the unique follicular unit arrangement pattern natural to the scalp.

Follicular Isolation Technique (FIT) was co-developed by Dr. Rose and involves removing groupings of hair, called follicular units, individually. Using a tiny punch device, each donor hair is isolated and extracted. FIT eliminates an obvious linear scar and allows for faster healing methods compared to alternative methods of extraction. FIT is typically designated for patients who prefer to wear their hair short and who do not require many grafts.

Follicular Unit Grafting (FUG) is commonly referred to as “single strip harvesting” because the donor tissue is removed in one piece to preserve the follicular units and prevent damage to the individual hair follicles. Dr. Rose developed the LEDGE closure technique to minimize scarring from donor strip sites which we have now been practicing for years.

Through a personalized consultation, Dr. Rose and Dr. Nusbaum will determine which technique works best for you and your lifestyle. To get started on the path toward permanent hereditary hair loss reversal, contact us at 205-448-9100 or request an appointment online.

Surgeons Review Viviscal® Hair Supplement, Recommend Alternatives

Surgeons Review Viviscal Hair Supplement, Recommend AlternativesViviscal® Extra Strength has been released, and promoters of the new hair supplement claim it has the ability to put an end to thinning, shedding, and balding in men and women. Dermatologists, surgeons, and other health professionals remain wary of the new supplement’s claims, however.

Although the makers of Viviscal® claim the product is “supported by a combination of over 20 years of research,” further investigation reveals that its history in clinical trials and testing is actually quite shallow. In short, the product has seen very few trials when compared to leading treatments like Rogaine® (Minoxidil). Moreover, the trials that have been conducted involved very few test subjects.

4 Reasons to Choose an Alternative to Viviscal®

Whether choosing a surgical or non-surgical approach, men and women no longer have to suffer with signs of thinning, shedding, or balding. There are several alternatives to Viviscal®, most of which are backed by many years of successful clinical trials and research. Here are 4 reasons to choose a better-known, and thus more reliable method of hair loss treatment.

Viviscal® is Backed by Little Research

One Viviscal® study involved just 20 subjects, 3 of which withdrew from the control group prior to completion (i). Concern for the effectiveness of Viviscal® only rises in the wake of such limited clinical testing and evaluation, causing many medical professionals to question the product’s efficacy in treating hair loss in men and women.

Other Non-Surgical Options Are Proven Effective*

One of the most heavily researched and trusted alternatives is Minoxidil, known by the brand name Rogaine®. A topical treatment, Rogaine is a foam product that is applied to the hair and scalp twice daily. Extra strength formulas are also available for patients with more pronounced hair loss.

*Rogaine® is proven to be effective in slowing or stopping hereditary hair loss (pattern baldness) in 4 out of 5 patients. At a cost that averages just $30-40 per month, Rogaine is a non-surgical alternative that is as affordable as it is effective.

Surgical Hair Restoration is Better Than Ever

When considering an alternative to Viviscal® hair supplements, it’s exciting to know that surgical hair restoration is now faster and more comfortable than ever. Today, hair transplant surgery is a simple, comfortably, and minimally invasive procedure that effectively restores areas of balding scalp with your own natural hair.

The days of hair plugs are long gone. Today, hair transplants are performed via follicular unit extraction (FUE), a highly refined process that transplants follicular grafts of about 1-3 hairs at a time. Such precision enables surgeons to restore the scalp by hand, artfully and skillfully reconstructing hairlines with natural characteristics. So natural, in fact, a reported 85% of people cannot recognize when a transplant procedure has been performed, according to the ISHRS (ii).

Speak to a Professional About Hair Loss

If you or a loved one suffers with hair loss, contact the Hair Transplant Institute of Miami today. Our team is comprised of South Florida’s finest hair transplant surgeons, registered nurses, microscopists, and technicians. We hold your pursuit of a fuller head of hair in the highest regard, providing only the most widely studied treatments that have been proven effective in treating hair loss in men and women.

The ARTAS® Generation. Our Institute is now 1 of fewer than 20 clinics to offer the revolutionary ARTAS® System for hair transplant. To learn more about the first ever FDA-approved transplant robot, visit our ARTAS System page.

Sources:

(i) “A comparative study of a new food supplement, ViviScal, with fish extract for the treatment of hereditary androgenic alopecia in young males.” National Center for Biotechnology Information, PubMed.gov. Accessed 5 August 2013.

(ii) “2010 Hair Transplant Challenge Survey.” International Society for Hair Restoration Surgery. Accessed 17 June 2013.

Hereditary Hair Loss, Demystified

Hereditary Hair Loss, DemystifiedAsapSCIENCE is making a big splash on YouTube. With over 500,000 subscribers, the science-based YouTube channel promises to deliver a weekly dose of science and fun through a series of animated videos that attack and demystify some of life’s most thought provoking questions. From describing the science of aging to learning why the chicken really crossed the road, the producers at AsapSCIENCE seem committed to helping Internet users better understand life, one 2 minute video at a time.

Earlier this month, AsapSCIENCE produced an excellent video on the science behind the most common instance of hereditary hair loss. We’re excited to share this video with our readers and encourage everyone to take a look:

An Important Note: As mentioned at the conclusion of the video, the presence (or absence) of a hair loss gene on the X chromosome is just one of the contributors to hair loss. And while it is the most common, it is important to remember that researchers are continually finding new hair loss genes. The hair loss gene APCDD1, for example, was just recently identified by collaborative research conducted at Columbia, Rockefeller, and Stanford Universities.

Hair Loss: A Polygenic Trait

The myth that “hair loss is inherited from the mother’s side” is derived from hair loss research of the early 1900s. Though well intentioned and progressive at the time, researchers were limited in their ability to analyze all possible contributing factors exhibited by their subjects. In the past, researchers have taken a single gene approach to hair loss research, choosing only 1 gene to track, analyze, and compare across different groups of subjects (i). This eventually led to the belief that hair loss was caused by a single gene on the X chromosome (as described in the video above).

While it’s true that certain genes on the X chromosome may cause hereditary hair loss, we now know that there’s a much bigger picture to consider. Modern medical research has identified hair loss is a very complex condition that is actually polygenic, meaning that a number of genes can play a causal role in its development and progression. Moreover, such genes can be inherited from either parent.

Genes and Appearance: What Determines Expression?

To complicate matters further, genetics are not the only thing to impact the way in which hair loss becomes visible, or expressed. A number of other factors may contribute as well, including:

Age. As a man or women continues to age, the likelihood that a hair loss gene may begin to express itself may increase.

Hormones. The relative balance of certain hormones like estrogen, testosterone, and DHT may have a profound impact on the health of hair follicles. DHT, in particular, is known to cause hair miniaturization by impairing healthy follicular function. For women, birth control pills may cause hair loss by similarly disrupting the relative balance of estrogen to testosterone.

Stress. According to the American Hair Loss Association, there is an apparent link between stress and hair loss (ii). Stress seems to affect hair follicle biochemistry, which may cause the hair to enter into a “resting” phase prematurely. This can lead to Telogen Effluvium, specific type of stress-induced hair loss.

Seek a Professional Hair Loss Evaluation, Today

When it comes to reversing the signs of hair loss, early detection is ctritical. Patients trust the Hair Transplant Institute of Miami because we are home to South Florida’s most talented transplant surgeons and clinical team. We are proud to offer the most comprehensive approach for evaluating and treating hair loss—an approach that has produced countless success stories.

Hair Loss Evaluation & Treatment. Readers are invited to learn more by visiting our hair loss evaluation page online. For direct assistance, readers are invited to contact our clinic directly at (305) 925-0222.

Sources:

(i) “Hair Loss Genes.” Bernstein Medical. Accessed 25 March 2013.

(ii) “Effluviums.” American Hair Loss Association. Accessed 25 March 2013.

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