Daily minoxidil for women

Pattern baldness, also known as androgenetic alopecia, is one of the most common causes of hair loss, seen frequently in men as they age. Moreover pattern hair loss is not an exclusive gentleman’s club. An expected 40% of women will develop pattern hair loss as they age1. However there are more treatment options for men, with only one medication, minoxidil, currently approved for use in women2.

Previous clinical trials have demonstrated both efficacy and safety for the use of a 2% minoxidil solution in women2–5. Most recently, a new study has just released the results of the use of a 5% minoxidil foam in women6. Over 400 women with female pattern hair loss were included in the study which investigated the use of once-daily 5% minoxidil foam for 24 weeks. A visible improvement was observed by 12 weeks with a significant increase of 9.1 hairs/cm2 by 24 weeks. Both patients and an expert review panel agreed that hair coverage had improved.

Compared with the previous 2% solution, the foam formulation was better tolerated with significantly lower reports of irritation7. The most common side effects of mild itching and dryness were observed in less than 10% of women. Severe itching and weight gain was observed in only 1.5% of participants. The increased tolerability is believed to be due to a new propylene glycol-free formula, as this ingredient has been shown to cause reaction in some individuals8–10.

Overall, minoxidil is one of the most well-studied treatment options for hair loss in women. Even so, it is important to discuss your individual situation with your physician or dermatologist prior to starting any new medication. For example, in this study, participants were either on birth control or were postmenopausal as minoxidil is not recommended for use during pregnancy. Consulting an expert will help to create an informed choice in your hair restoration.

Article by: Dr. J.L. Carviel, PhD, Mediprobe Research Inc.


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