Understanding Female Hair Loss

About 40 percent of Americans who experience hair loss are women. That's about 25 to 30 million women in the U.S. who are either bald or have very thin hair. One obstacle is that some hair loss symptoms in women may be different from those in men. Another challenge is that many women stay silent about their condition. The good news is that women can take steps to recognize their unique symptoms of hair loss and begin to seek the most effective hair transplant technology at True & Dorin Medical Group. Here is a brief look at female hair loss, common symptoms, causes, and how to seek the right treatment for your unique condition.

Symptoms of Female Hair Loss

The most common hair loss symptom in women is a slow but steady loss of hair on the top of the head. With this type of hair loss, a woman will still have a healthy hairline but will experience a thinning of hair behind it.

In some cases, a woman might experience the same pattern of hair loss as male pattern baldness, a thinning of the hair that starts at the hairline or top of the head and can lead to partial or complete baldness. Other signs of hair loss in women include round patches of thin or bald areas, loss of hair on the sides only, the loss or thinning of all scalp hair, and sudden or rapid hair loss.

Video Patient Testimonial: Anna's Story

In this hair restoration patient testimonial, Anna talks about her experience at True & Dorin. She felt very comfortable with the doctors and staff, and explains her options and treatment in detail.

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Causes of Female Hair Loss

Women might experience hair loss due to a genetic condition called androgenic alopecia. But even if genes are the cause of hair loss, women can still slow or treat the loss. Hair loss can also be caused by stress, sudden shock, rapid weight loss or gain, tight braiding, thyroid deficiency, diabetes, physical injury, seborrhea, psoriasis, and hormonal imbalances. Some women can lose their hair as a result of autoimmune conditions, such as alopecia areata and chronic telogen effluvium (CTE), although the latter is less common. Hair loss can also occur from chemotherapy treatments, X-rays, radiation, and certain medications including those used for anesthesia, cholesterol, and blood pressure.

Sudden hair loss can be a symptom of an underlying medical condition or health change and should be discussed with your doctor.

Causes of Hair Loss Unique to Females

There are many causes of hair loss that are unique to women. Women might lose their hair about three months after giving birth, and after discontinuing birth control pills. Another cause of female hair loss is excessive estrogen. (The type of hair loss that occurs due to pregnancy and after going off birth control pills typically reverses after six months.)

Regain Your Femininity

Women experience baldness in different patterns than men. However, female hair loss can often be successfully treated using the same techniques used to treat male pattern baldness. In treating hair loss in women at our New York, New Jersey, and Boston offices, however, we tailor the results to the individual, regardless of the procedure we perform.

Women whose hair loss conforms to the Ludwig pattern usually maintain a good hairline. In this case, the hair behind the hairline becomes sparse. Usually, the female hair loss occurs at times of hormonal change, such as contraception, childbirth, or menopause. It is uncommon for women to thin beyond the Ludwig class II pattern, and very rare for complete baldness to occur.

Video Testimonial: Female Hair Transplant

Dr. Dorin performed an ultra-refined follicular unit hair transplant for this female consisting of 885 grafts to bolster frontal density

Before and after one transplant of 1277 follicular units: 2,218 hairs added

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Instances of female hair loss frequently occur in a woman’s early twenties and will not worsen over time. The hair on the back of the head retains its original density, so our doctors can harvest the area for donor hair. Transplants are then placed throughout areas of thinning hair. Depending on the extent of thinning, a woman can have substantially thicker hair in as little as a single treatment session.

It is less common for women to bald in a pattern similar to men; most often, hair loss in women occurs either in the temple, resulting in a "male shaped" hairline, or the hair thins in a triangular pattern in the center of the front. Fortunately, both conditions are usually repairable as long as sufficient donor supply remains on the back of the scalp. True & Dorin Medical Group can also recreate feminine hairlines.

Hair loss in women can occur in different patterns, as our team explains to patients at our New York, New Jersey, and Boston centers. Different patterns include the following:

  • Gradual thinning: occurs throughout the top of the head behind the hairline (see Ludwig's classification shown above).
  • Androgenic alopecia: follows the same patterns of male balding.
  • Angular alopecia: hair is lost on the sides only.
  • Diffuse alopecia (DA): the hair thins throughout the entire scalp.

Patient before and after a treatment of 1174 follicular units

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Women who have DA, or diffuse alopecia, are not suitable candidates for hair transplantation. There is not sufficient donor hair to accomplish meaningful restoration. However, most hair loss in women falls into the other two aforementioned groups.

Women can also permanently lose hair from repeated use of tight braids (traction alopecia) or styling agents called relaxers. Both can be treated successfully with transplants.

Scarring from face or brow lifts can also be hidden with transplants.

Below is an example of hair loss due to traction alopecia. The photo shows how the balding pattern can be successfully restored with hair transplantation:

Patient before and after one 1405 follicular unit hair transplant: 2,357 hairs added

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Learn More About Female Hair Loss

Dr. True and Dr. Dorin specialize in providing customizable hair restoration treatments for women. We offer a comfortable and safe approach to surgical hair transplantation tailored to your unique condition. If you would like more information about female hair loss or would like to schedule a consultation, please contact True & Dorin at our New York, New Jersey, or Boston clinics.

Actual Patient Results

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