Hair Loss (cont.)
Nili N. Alai, MD, FAAD
Dr. Alai is an actively practicing medical and surgical dermatologist in south Orange County, California. She has been a professor of dermatology and family medicine at the University of California, Irvine since 2000. She is U.S. board-certified in dermatology, a 10-year-certified fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology, and Fellow of the American Society of Mohs Surgery.
Alan Rockoff, MD
Dr. Rockoff received his undergraduate degree from Yeshiva College with the distinction of Summa Cum Laude. He received his medical degree from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. His internship and two years of Pediatric residency were at the Bronx Municipal Hospital Center, followed by training in Dermatology at the combined residency program at Tufts and Boston Universities. Dr. Rockoff is certified by both the American Board of Dermatology and the American Board of Pediatrics.
William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.
In this Article
- What are causes of hair loss?
- How is hair loss classified?
- What is alopecia areata?
- What is traction alopecia?
- What is trichotillomania?
- What is tinea capitis?
- What is generalized (diffuse) hair loss?
- What is telogen effluvium?
- What is androgenetic alopecia ("male-pattern baldness," "female-pattern baldness")?
- What treatment is there for hair loss in men?
- What other options do I have for hair loss?
- Is hair loss in women different than men?
- What about pregnancy hair loss?
- What specific treatments are there for hair loss in women?
- What vitamins are good for hair loss?
- Can itchy scalp cause hair loss?
- How do I prevent hair loss?
- Hair Loss At A Glance
- View Hair Loss Pictures - Slideshow
- Hair and Scalp Pictures - Slideshow
- Take the Hair Loss Quiz!
- Hair Loss FAQs
- Find a local Dermatologist in your town
What vitamins are good for hair loss?
A good daily multivitamin containing zinc, vitamin B, folate, iron, and calcium is a very reasonable choice. Newer studies suggest that vitamin D may be somewhat helpful and worth considering. Specific vitamin and mineral deficiencies like iron or vitamin B12 may be diagnosed by blood tests and treated.
Learn more about: B12
Multiple vitamins including biotin have been promoted for hair growth, but solid scientific studies for many of these claims are lacking. While taking biotin and other supplements marketed for hair, skin, and nails probably won't worsen anything, it may also not necessarily help the situation. Therefore, advertised hair-regrowth supplements should be approached with mild caution.
Can itchy scalp cause hair loss?
Itchy scalp may cause mild, reversible hair loss. Causes may include seborrheic dermatitis (dandruff). Treatments may include medicated shampoos like ketoconazole (Nizoral) and topical cortisone creams and lotions to help decrease itching.
Learn more about: Nizoral
How do I prevent hair loss?
Hair loss prevention involves several factors depending on the underlying cause. Good hair hygiene with regular shampooing is a basic step. Good nutrition, especially adequate levels of iron and vitamin B, is helpful. Treatment of underlying medical conditions like thyroid disease, anemia, and hormonal imbalances may useful in prevention.
- Hair loss is a very common condition and affects most people at some time in their lives.
- Androgenetic hair loss is seen in both men and women but is worse in men.
- Health issues like thyroid disease, anemia, and low vitamin levels may cause hair loss.
- Alopecia areata is a very common, coin-shaped temporary hair loss patch that usually resolves on its own.
- Medications for hair regrowth include minoxidil (Rogaine), finasteride (Propecia), and dutasteride (Avodart).
- Prevention includes good hair hygiene, regular shampooing, and good nutrition.
- Medical health screening for hair loss may include tests like complete blood count (CBC), iron level, vitamin B, and thyroid function tests (TFT).
- The outlook for hair loss is improving and research is ongoing.
Bolognia, Jean, Jorizzo, Joseph, and Rapini, Ronald. Dermatology. Philadelphia: Mosby Elsevier, 2008.
Last Editorial Review: 8/18/2010
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