Hair Loss in Women

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In this post, we will tell you what the causes of hair loss in women are, and the different types of hair transplant procedures that are available if you are a candidate for a female hair transplant.

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Causes of Hair Loss in Women

Hair loss may be caused by heredity, hormonal changes, illnesses, or simply becoming older. It might be either transitory or ongoing. Men tend to lose their hair more frequently, although many women do as well. Here we have listed a few of the most common types of hair loss.

Androgenic Alopecia

A prevalent cause of non-scarring alopecia in women is female androgenetic alopecia (FAGA). After puberty, the onset can happen at any age, and as you get older, it happens more frequently. Clinically, the frontal hairline is typically preserved while there is diffuse hair thinning throughout the centre scalp. FAGA may have serious psychological repercussions, including anxiety and depression. This makes early diagnosis crucial for halting the disease’s progression to avoid hair loss in women.

Telogen Effluvium

More dormant hair follicles will be present if this number dramatically decreases during the resting (telogen) phase of hair growth. This causes Telogen Effluvium (TE) hair loss in women, which normally doesn’t last forever and mostly impacts the top of the scalp. Your hairline will hardly ever recede as a result of TE. Additionally, it’s doubtful that you’ll lose all of your hair. Extreme cases of TE may result in hair loss in other places, such as your eyebrows.

Alopecia Areata

Alopecia areata is a typical autoimmune condition that frequently causes erratic hair loss in women and men. On the scalp, hair typically sheds in sections. These blotches are frequently a few centimetres or smaller. Other areas of the body including the face, such as the eyelashes and eyebrows, may also experience hair loss. Around 147 million people are impacted globally. No matter your age, gender, or colour, alopecia can affect you; nevertheless, the majority of instances start before the age of 30.

Tinea Capitis

The rash known as tinea capitis or ringworm of the scalp is brought on by a fungus. On the head, it typically results in bald patches with scaly, itchy skin. Due to their round shape, ringworms receive their name. No worms are present.

Hair Shaft Abnormalities

Any structural irregularity of the hair shaft is referred to as hair shaft abnormalities. While certain hair shaft flaws can be identified by visual inspection alone, others might need microscopic testing. The reasons for aberrant hair shafts include hereditary conditions, illnesses, or environmental events that can modify the qualities of these structures and cause fragility or changes in the texture, appearance, or manageability of the hair shaft. The majority of hair shaft conditions are incurable. Some may go better with time or when the underlying reason is treated.

Hypotrichosis

Dermatologists refer to the condition of no hair development as hypotrichosis. Hypotrichosis depicts a condition where there was never any hair development, as a contrast to alopecia, which describes hair loss when previously there was hair growth.

Anagen Effluvium

The first sign of anagen effluvium is the sudden loss of most or all of the hair from the scalp, as well as frequently from the entire body. Shortly after the stressful occurrence, the scalp may become partially or fully bald, with a 90 percent hair loss in women over a few weeks.

Possible Reasons for Hair Loss in Women

To be eligible for a women’s hair transplant, you must meet a number of requirements. We must first examine the probable reasons for hair loss in women, which could include the following:

  • Hormone level changes
  • A heritable propensity for hair loss
  • Medication
  • Pregnancy
  • Menopause and autoimmune conditions
  • Deficit in iron
  • Excessive anxiety
  • Crash diets and rapid weight loss

Diagnosing Hair Loss in Women

Your doctor will perform a physical exam and inquire about your nutrition, hair care regimen, and medical and family history before reaching a diagnosis. Numerous tests can be run to help with the diagnosis.

A scalp biopsy may be carried out by your doctor, and a blood test may show health conditions that lead to hair loss in women. To do this, small scrapes of the skin or a few hairs from the scalp must be removed in order to inspect the hair roots under a microscope.

Your doctor will use a method called light microscopy to use a specialised tool to analyse your hair. Pull test to determine how many hairs will fall off, a few dozen are gently tugged.

The Different Types of Hair Transplant Procedures

Up to 40% of women experience hair loss; Thankfully hair transplants can combat hair loss in women. Follicular unit transplantation (FUT) and follicular unit extraction (FUE) are two different forms of hair transplantation methods. FUT is a minimally invasive procedure to conceal bald areas brought on by hair loss. Hair transplantation is now a more effective, safe, and dependable solution for hair loss in women, to regain a more young and natural appearance of their hair.

Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT)

In FUT surgery, a doctor makes a small cut in the skin on the side or back of your head and removes a few hair follicles at a time. These follicles are then inserted into the balding areas of your scalp.

An average hair transplant procedure lasts 4 to 8 hours. In general, FUT surgery is faster than FUE surgery. With a local anaesthetic that numbs their scalp, the majority of patients undergo surgery while awake. This is what the FUT procedure will look like.

  • The surgeon will mark the region where the hair was removed, redraw your hairline, and take pictures for your medical file. Your scalp will be numbed by a local anaesthetic.
  • Your hair will be extracted from the donor location, where the hair will be clipped to a length of roughly two millimetres.
  • The strip of skin with the hair follicles that will be utilised as graft will be excised by the surgeon. You’ll be awake throughout the procedure.
  • Individual hair follicles will be taken out of the strip by a technician and prepared for transplantation.
  • Your scalp will be sutured shut by the surgeon.
  • The balding areas of your scalp will then have the hair follicles put into them in a pattern that looks natural.
  • On your scalp, an antibiotic and bandages will be administered.

In most cases, 6 to 9 months after surgery, patients experience improvements. For some, it takes a year to see results.

Who is a Good Candidate for Follicular Unit Transplant?

The following conditions will make you a good candidate for a follicular unit transplant FUT)

  • Hair colour: Women whose hair colour is similar to their skin tone typically make better candidates.
  • Age: FUT is typically performed on patients who are over 25. In younger people, hair loss patterns are less predictable.
  • Balding area: The front of the head is where hair loss is most effectively treated with FUT.
  • The thickness of your hair: With high hair follicle density, women typically get better coverage.

Side Effects of FUT

After FUT, complications are uncommon. A lot of blood flowing to the head makes it possible for it to heal fast and guards against infections. Fewer than 1% of patients experience postoperative infections. Here is a list of some of the potential complications.

  • Pain
  • Bleeding
  • Numbness
  • Swelling
  • Cysts
  • Inflammation
  • Scaring
  • Unnatural looking hair
  • Shock hair loss

Shock hair loss, within two months after surgery, it’s usual for transplanted hair to fall out. Almost always, the hair regrows in four months.

Scarring, a scar is left at the hair removal location after the FUT procedure. The scar is irreversible but will eventually diminish. Depending on how many hair follicles were removed during surgery, the scar will vary in size. Your hair usually covers the scar.

Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE)

Hair loss in women can be treated with a type of hair transplant called follicular unit extraction (FUE) involves removing multiple hair follicles from your skin and relocating them to an area of your body where hair is weaker or non-existent.

FUE is frequently carried out over several days in a series of 2 to 4-hour duration. A “big session” may occasionally last between 10 and 12 hours. This is what the FUE procedure will look like.

  • Photos will be taken in pre-defined positions to analyse the results.
  • The donor and recipient locations are marked by the physician. The donor area may have some or all of its hair removed.
  • After preparing the donor area local anaesthesia will be applied.
  • Millimetric surgical instruments are used for the extraction.
  • In a one-day operation, between 1,000 and 2,000 follicular units are removed, resulting in 2,200 to 6,000 hairs.
  • The follicular units are immediately placed in a special solution that guarantees their viability.
  • The recipient area is given an anaesthetic during this step of the surgery. The follicular units are placed in the recipient area using precise devices known as implanters.
  • The majority of the transplanted hairs will fall out between the sixth and eighth week following the implantation surgery, at an average rate of roughly 80%. Approximately 3 to 4 months following the operation, hair growth will begin.

Who is a Good Candidate for Follicular Unit Extraction Transplant?

The FUE method produces hair that looks natural and is safe. Here are a few criteria to help you choose the best candidates.

  • Age: Anyone over the age of 25 is a good candidate for FUE hair restoration.
  • Health: Another factor that determines your candidacy for the FUE surgery is your general health. To be eligible, you must be in good health.
  • Hair Density: For the treatment to be successful, you must have an adequate supply of donor hair. Your eligibility for this surgical operation is influenced by the condition of your donor hair.

FUE Side Effects

While adverse effects are possible, problems following hair transplantation are generally uncommon. Here you will find a list of the potential side effects.

  • Shedding of hair
  • Itching
  • Bleeding
  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Infections
  • Scarring
  • Numbness

Micro Blend grafting

The most common cause of hair loss in women is female pattern baldness. It affects the top and front of your head if you have female pattern baldness. Fortunately, your scalp’s sides and back are genetically predisposed to lifelong growth. Your donor area is made up of these “horseshoe” shaped regions on the sides and back. Your balding spots will eventually start to sprout new hair that was autografted from these areas.

The grafts can either be “mini” or “micro” (follicular) grafts (follicular groupings). There are one to three hair follicles per micrograft. Four to six hairs are seen in follicular clusters. In earlier “punch” transplants, 10 to 20 follicles are present.

Follicular graft advantages: Micro/mini grafts create fine, fragile hair that more nearly matches your hair growth before going bald. The most realistic-looking hairline is achieved by using one to three hair transplants since the hairline serves as a proper transition region from the forehead to fuller hair further back.

Micrografts almost never leave any scarring. They also preserve a lot of the hair that will be required for transplants in the future. The depth of your hair loss, the volume of your donor hair, and the number of treatments all affect how much coverage you get.

Results: Within a month, the majority of the transplanted hair will fall out. 90 to 100 days later, or roughly three months after, healthy hair begins to grow and keeps growing normally. The transplanted hairs start to seem natural about six months following the hair transplant procedure and will keep growing for the rest of your life. The area from which the hair was removed from the donor site becomes a tiny, barely perceptible incision line that is entirely concealed by the hair around it.

Preparing for Your Hair Transplant

When experiencing hair loss in women, it’s important to prepare for the big day. Before your surgery, you will have received a list of instructions to follow. These may change according to the type of hair transplant you will be getting, they must always be followed.

  • At least 24 hours before surgery, stop smoking.
  • Avoid drinking alcohol for three days before surgery.
  • Avoid getting your hair cut just before surgery.
  • A month or two prior to your procedure, massage your scalp daily.
  • Avoid taking antidepressants.
  • Two weeks before surgery, stop taking any multivitamin/mineral pills as well as herbal supplements.

After Care and Recovery from a Hair Transplant

A hair transplant is an easy operation for hair loss in women that don’t need hospitalisation and has a high success rate. FUE hair transplant recovery takes around seven days, while FUT hair transplant recovery takes about fourteen days. Your stitches will be taken out seven to ten days following the FUT operation.

The hair grafts won’t be entirely secure for the first two weeks following surgery, so take caution. During this time, any blows to the head could be damaging to the final result.

  • Use mild shampoo to wash your scalp.
  • Avoid wearing headgear
  • Avoid exercising
  • Avoid too much caffeine
  • Try eating healthy

The First Four Days After Surgery

Regularly misting your scalp with saline solution will help your follicles heal more quickly, keep your incisions clean, and keep scabbing at bay. During these first few days, it is important to avoid swimming, smoking, and drinking alcohol as well as strenuous exercises.

Days Five to Nine

Your scalp should be sufficiently healed five days after your hair transplant for you to start gently washing it once more. The discomfort and swelling that developed during the transplant ought to have mostly subsided by this point. Even though the majority of the healing has already been completed by this point, we still advise against engaging in any high-impact physical activity right after your hair transplant to make sure all of the follicles are completely healed.

Days Ten to Fourteen

Your scalp will probably look pink and scabby at this time. Normally, this only lasts 10 to 14 days, but in the case of those with pale complexion, it may persist for longer. Your grafted follicles will soon begin to produce thick, healthy new hairs as a result of all of this. You can now resume shampooing your hair in the usual manner.

How to Wash Your Hair After a Hair Transplant

Following your hair transplant, you can start washing your hair again as follows:

  • Fill up a bowl with water.
  • Add a few drops of mild shampoo or tea tree shampoo to the water.
  • Use a jug to pour the water over the affected areas.
  • Gently cleanse the suture line while patting down the grafts in the transplanted area in a circular motion.
  • Rinse off with clean water.
  • You can pat dry your hair or leave it to dry naturally.

Three to Six Months Later

After your incisions have healed, we let nature take its course and your hair will slowly begin to grow naturally again. Patients must go for check-ups three months and six months after the procedure.

Ten Months Later

Most of your hair follicles should start producing hair again between 8 and 10 months, and by then, the vast majority of hair transplant patients will have experienced complete, naturally healthy hair growth.

Twelve Months Later

Your last check-up will be around 12 months after the procedure. Checking your hairline and hair growth will be necessary to judge the overall outcome.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Getting a Hair Transplant

When it comes to hair loss in women, many opt for getting a hair transplant. Before deciding whether to get a hair transplant, you must weigh the benefits and drawbacks.

Advantages

Disadvantages

Usually permanent

It may require more than one procedure

Natural-looking hair

Can be costly

Improves appearance

You could get side effects

Will boost your self-esteem

 

Other Treatments for Hair Loss in Women

Here you will find the alternative treatments for hair loss in women, but remember they are not as effective as a hair transplant.

  • Finasteride: These tablets can provide results from three to six months of continuous usage.
  • Laser therapy: This can promote cellular activity and treats female hair loss. It encourages hair retention and can fortify brittle hair.

Conclusion

As long as you adhere to your doctor’s recommendations, hair transplantation for women usually produces hair that looks natural, and recovery times are typically fast. Put those hair loss in women days behind you!

Although the choice might seem overwhelming, the surgery itself is typically painless and straightforward. Additionally, it is regarded as less invasive and low risk. Knowing what to anticipate will help you stop worrying when hairs fall out or it takes a while to grow out the thick, shiny head of hair you want.

What are the causes of hair loss

Frequently Asked Questions

Hair transplants are typically effective medical treatments. According to a 2016 study, participants gave their overall satisfaction an average score of 8.3 out of 10. People should take into account the fact that ultimate outcomes could take up to 18 months to manifest when evaluating success rates.

Patients frequently describe slight soreness for one to two days after having hair transplant surgery. However, any discomfort can be reduced with painkillers and 48 hours of chilling the treated areas. Perhaps more painful than FUE is the FUT process.

Yes, hair loss is rather common in women with more than 50% of women living with it. Every day, between 50 and 150 individual hairs are lost from each person’s head of hair. The hair will often regrow. However, if the hair follicle is thinned, this regrowth does not take place.

As long as the procedure was carried out by a skilled and experienced surgeon, hair transplants are a permanent solution to hair loss. It’s also essential to carefully care for transplanted hair after surgery to guarantee the best outcomes.

There is always some risk involved with surgery. However, side effects from surgical hair loss treatment are uncommon and typically minor. Infection or bleeding is rare. Aspirin, some medications, and some herbal therapies should generally be avoided before surgery. Please share any specific worries you may have with your doctor.

Last updated by Mercia-Mari on August 18, 2022. Content medically reviewed by D. Demirel, MD.

  • Hair loss: Diagnosis and treatment. American Academy of Dermatology. (n.d.). Retrieved July 11, 2022, from AAD.

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