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female pattern hair loss

This is also called Androgenetic alopecia and is the common balding seen in society. The condition is caused by genetic inheritance and the effects of androgens (male hormones) on the scalp. These male hormonal changes occur locally on the scalp and therefore will not generally show up on endocrinology blood work

In women this hereditary thinning occurs later than in men. About 40% of the time it happens in the 6th decade of life. In women the pattern of hair loss is not that of the usual male pattern. Instead women will generally lose hair in the Ludwig classification type I-III.  If a female complains of significant acne or hair growth in places they don't want, then end endocrinology work up may be indicated. 

Other conditions that should be considered are conditions that cause diffuse scarring alopecia. These conditions include telogen effluvium, secondary syphilis, systems lupus erythematous, iron deficeicny, functional thyroid disease, trichotillomania, and seborrheic dermatitis. Sometimes a scalp biopsy may be needed to help differentiate the causes. 

There are numerous treatment options that a dermatologist can review with the patient. Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) may be a good choice to re-grow hair in many patients. 

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