How Likely is Hair Regrowth?

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Anyone losing hair comes to the point when one starts thinking of reversing ones condition. A quick internet search will turn up a myriad of guaranteed treatments for regrowing lost hair. It is obvious that many of them were solely designed to make money for their originators but there are some remedies that can be really helpful. The question is how useful and who can benefit.

When referring to hair loss, most people think of male pattern baldness, characteristic of it horseshoe balding pattern. Most treatments for hair regrowth target this type of baldness. Male pattern baldness affects about 40% of the male population and its female form, called female pattern baldness occurs in about 25% of women. The main cause of both forms is the male hormone testosterone being converted into the follicle harming dihydrotestosterone (DHT). This may sound weird but female body also produces the male hormone testosterone. However, despite the general assumption that it is the overproduction of DHT that is causing our hair to die it is the inability of some affected hair follicles to defend themselves effectively from these attacks that leads to hair miniaturisation and eventual hair loss. Therefore, the most effective hair loss treatments try to address this aspect and work by either inhibiting the production of DHT such as finasteride (Propecia) or bind to the receptor sites in hair follicles and protect these sites from interacting with DHT such as spironolactone. Propecia/finasteride happens to be the most effective treatment for male pattern baldness, whereas spironolactone is considered to be the same weapon for women.

However, in addition to protecting your hair follicles from DHT attacks you also need a treatment that would stimulate new hair growth. Although many treatments promise to do that the only FDA approved treatment that has been proven to promote hair growth in the majority of patients is Rogaine (minoxidil), which can be used as an effective hair regrowth treatment by both sexes. Now, reviewing the numbers Rogaine/minoxidil has been proven to regrow hair, depending on the strength and the form, in about 55% of hair loss sufferers. Finasteride/Propecia has about the same ratio of effectiveness. Spironolactone has been less well studied as a remedy for treating hair loss as its is not an approved hair loss treatment but the reasonable estimates indicate that it could be effective in about 50% of women suffering from hereditary form of hair loss. To sum it up, combining a DHT blocker with a hair growth stimulant should be helpful in no less that 55% of the patients, with higher percentages being possible. However, one should not expect to regrow the hair that has been lost more than three years ago.