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Can Two Pills a Day keep the Hair Loss Away?

Can two pills a day keep the hair loss away?

Many patients go into a hair clinic thinking that hair transplant surgery is the only solution for their hair loss. Often, this isn’t true, and patients are advised to use medical therapies as a hair loss treatment or as an addition to surgery. The typical course of action is dual modality treatment, with the two most common medications being Minoxidil and Finasteride. 

You might have some concerns regarding medical therapy. These uncertainties can include side effects of medications, when to introduce which medication, and the price of the medicine. 

Are 'before and after' photos fake?

Unfortunately, some clinics add hair-building fibers to the patient’s hair to create the illusion of denser hair before taking photos. Ideally, try to find non-sponsored posts from patents. Sharing your own hair loss journey and treatment experiences might benefit others who are in a similar situation.

Many available videos provide information about medical and surgical solutions for hair loss. For example, Al Garrido has a video about using Minoxidil, Finasteride, and microneedling for hair loss. Dr. Gary Linkov has also reacted to Al Garrido’s video.

Should I use multiple therapies from the start?

Usually for medical therapy, it is recommended to be on two different medical therapies. Minoxidil and finasteride are the first line. Others include microneedling, PRP, and laser light. If you are on too many medical therapies, it might be difficult to discern which is the one responsible for your improvement. 

How consistent do I need to be with non-surgical therapies?

What deters some patients from committing to medical therapy is the persistence needed for the treatment to be effective. 
 
Finasteride and minoxidil are typically administered daily. Minoxidil (in the topical form) is used twice daily for men and once daily for women. The half-life of topical minoxidil is 22 hours, so it does lead to results even if men apply it once a day. Some men choose to do this because it is more convenient, but it is advised to use the medication twice a day. Oral minoxidil is a great alternative for men and women. 
 
Microneedling is typically done once a month in the beginning, and then patients can get the treatment more frequently if they are comfortable. Since minoxidil solutions contain alcohol, the two treatments should be done with time in between so that the minoxidil doesn’t cause a burning sensation.

Does it matter if I use a minoxidil solution, foam or pill?

The impact of minoxidil comes from its systemic absorption. This happens to some degree when foams or solutions are used. Because of this you can notice that your beard is getting thicker even though you’re only applying minoxidil to your scalp. Minoxidil, in its pill form, is more potent and effective. 

Can microneedling do more harm than good?

Microneedling results in pinpoint bleeding and can lead to infections or scarring. Whether the treatment is safe will depend on how carefully you do it. Microneedling may result in scarring. The scars can leave the skin with a rigid texture that a surgeon can notice when doing a transplant.
 
It is recommended that you use a 0.5mm - 1.5 mm needle, and you should always keep the instrument clean. You can use a device with cartridges that can be changed, similar to a disposable razor. Using a stamping tool, such as a dermapen, rather than a roller is also beneficial. When done correctly, the benefits of microneedling generally outweigh the drawbacks. 

What if my hair starts falling out during medical therapy?

It is essential to distinguish shedding that is part of the hairs’ growth cycle from further hair loss. 
 
Shedding regularly occurs with medical therapy since the medications accelerate the growth cycle of the hairs. This isn’t something that should cause concern. Many patients begin to worry that the treatment is making them lose hair instead of helping it grow, so they stop taking the treatment before new hairs have a chance to grow. 
 
Still, hair loss can occur even with the use of medication. This can be due to a variety of causes, such as aging, stress, or the when say generic Finasteride loses efficacy.

What if I can’t afford the medication?

Depending on the pharmacy and your insurance provider, the price of hair loss medications can vary. 
 
The constant financial demand of these therapies is sometimes why patients wait to start them or choose to end the treatment. FeelConfident.com provides affordable generic drugs for hair loss, and you can subscribe to their mailing list for product updates here.

Is Ketoconazole shampoo a valuable addition to hair loss therapy?

Ketoconazole shampoo can be a beneficial addition to your medical therapy regimen. It's anti-fungal properties, targeting fungus and yeast that can live on the scalp, can lead to anti-inflammatory effects. 

Ketoconazole can be used several times a week. It should not be used every day because it can dry out your scalp. Its primary use is with seborrheic dermatitis. Leaving seborrheic dermatitis untreated can lead to additional hair loss.

The content of this newsletter is for entertainment and educational purposes only. This content is not meant to provide any medical advice or treat any medical conditions. Patients must be evaluated by an appropriate healthcare provider on an individual basis and treatment must be tailored to meet that patient’s needs. Results and particular outcomes are not guaranteed.

Written by Aleksandra Božović | Edited by Dr. Gary Linkov
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