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Alopecia in men
Causes and treatments
Whilst lifestyle and environmental factors contribute to or accelerate hair loss – such as stress, smoking, poor nutrition and exposure to UV or chemicals – the most common reason for hair loss in men is Male Pattern Baldness (also known as MPB), or Androgenetic Alopecia.
It will affect 70% of men at some point in their lives. 90% of hair loss in men occurs when susceptible hair follicles are exposed to the androgen (male hormone) Dihydrotestosterone, or DHT, a metabolite of testosterone which causes your hair to become finer and shorter with each growth cycle and results in a thinning effect that eventually becomes permanent hair loss.
What is male pattern baldness?
In most men, sections of hair in the front, crown, and top of the scalp – where follicles with androgen receptors are located – are the areas that typically suffer hair loss, while hair growth at the sides and rear of the scalp is usually unaffected – resulting in the classic horseshoe-shaped ring of hair associated with Male Pattern Baldness. This pattern is illustrated by the Norwood-Hamilton scale.
The different types of Alopecia
Alopecia areata is a recurrent disease causing hair loss – which frustratingly has no known cause. Although many patients cite stress and anxiety as contributors. Often presenting as round or oval patches, alopecia areata is most commonly seen on the scalp or in the eyebrows – although it can appear in any area hair grows.
While the hair’s regrowth means patches are typically restored naturally within six months to a year, most patients who develop alopecia areata find it returns in the same areas and can progress to Alopecia Totalis, meaning the loss of all scalp hair.
Traction alopecia is caused by the chronic pulling on the hair follicle and can appear in areas of a man’s scalp where a hairpiece is frequently used.
Traction alopecia may also be a result of trichotillomania, a compulsive disorder in which patients pull on, or ‘pluck’ hairs, usually from a specific area. This creates unusual hair loss patterns that differ distinctly from alopecia areata, and if untreated can also lead to scarring alopecia or long-term permanent hair loss.
Injury to the scalp caused by physical trauma, disease or burns which may leave permanent scars and permanent hair loss.
Autoimmune diseases such as lupus or scleroderma may cause permanent hair loss due to scalp scarring. Scarring alopecia may also be caused by bacterial infections such as folliculitis, fungal infections and viral infections such as shingles.
The Kensington Hair Clinic offers solutions to Alopecia
Our well-situated and discreet location in Central London offers access to some of the U.K.’s leading experts in men’s hair loss and restoration in a high-end private clinic environment.