MALE PATTERN HAIR LOSS
Male-pattern hair loss (MPHL) or androgenetic alopecia is a pattern of hair loss presenting as either a receding hairline or loss of hair on the crown of the scalp or both. It is the most common cause of hair loss in males and is mainly due to the effect of androgens (male hormones), mainly dihydrotestosterone. It is a natural process which men witness with age but can be very stressful and disturbing. It is often genetically inherited, and usually starts by the age of 30-40 years.
The classical male pattern baldness begins with the recession of hairline in M-shaped manner above the temples or the crown of the scalp, progressing to involve the entire front and vertex of the scalp with only a rim of hair remaining at the sides and back of the scalp. Patients with male pattern baldness usually have a genetically determined sensitivity to the effect of male hormones (dihydrotestosterone) over the hair follicles of the front and the crown of the scalp. These hormones shorten the growth phase of the hair follicle and hence cause miniaturization of the follicle, resulting in fewer and finer hair.
A healthy balanced diet with an adequate amount of nutrients and vitamins is mandatory for proper growth of hair. Lifestyle changes like regular exercise, avoiding stress by yoga or meditation, avoiding smoking also play a major role in preventing hair fall. Harsh products like hair colours or frequent hair treatments, heat damage, environmental pollution etc also cause damage to the hair. It is advisable to consult a dermatologist as soon as possible, to stop the progression of hair fall.
Lifestyle plays an important role in preventing hair loss. small steps like quitting smoking, doing regular exercise, and avoiding stress will help prevent excessive hair fall. Always consult a dermatologist if it persists as this might be linked to severe causes and hence needs immediate attention.
Treatment is given in the form of oral hair supplements which help inadequate growth of hair. Blood investigations to rule out any vitamin or mineral deficiencies, thyroid disorders and other hormonal problems are required to treat any underlying problems. Hair serums containing minoxidil or other growth peptides also help in reducing hair fall and promoting hair growth. Finasteride and Dutasteride are useful as these help in blocking the effect of hormones on the hair, thereby playing a major role in male pattern baldness.
Along with oral supplements and hair serums, treatments are done which help in boosting their effect and help in hair growth. Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy uses growth factors present in plasma, thereby causing hair regrowth and reducing hair fall. Mesotherapy is also helpful as a cocktail of serums containing hair peptides, amino acids, growth factors and stem cells are infused into the scalp using a transdermal device. It advanced cases not responding to the above treatments or with pronounced baldness, hair transplantation is the best option.
Male pattern hair loss is not just a cosmetic issue. It rather has a huge psychological impact, causing low self-esteem and stress. It is advisable to seek treatment as early as possible to prevent its progression to advanced stages. Consult your nearest Dermatologist for treatment for hair fall.
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