This common question comes from members of our hair loss social community and discussion forum:

I recently started finasteride (Propecia) and noticed a new health problem. Is this issue a side effect of the finasteride? Is Propecia causing my health problems?

Propecia BoxThis is a very common question among new finasteride (Propecia) users. Within the past few years, finasteride has been associated with a variety of side effects.  Most commonly, sexual side effects. Whether or not Propecia can cause all these side effects remains a heated issued. Each patient will react differently to the medication and psychology will always play a role, but what health issues and side effects can be attributed to Propecia use?

According to the manufacturer, the side effects of Propecia include:

In clinical studies for PROPECIA, a small number of men experienced certain sexual side effects, such as less desire for sex, difficulty in achieving an erection, or a decrease in the amount of semen. Each of these side effects occurred in less than 2% of men and went away in men who stopped taking PROPECIA because of them.

In general use, the following have been reported: breast tenderness and enlargement (tell your doctor about any changes in your breasts such as lumps, pain, or nipple discharge); depression; decrease in sex drive that continued after stopping the medication; allergic reactions including rash, itching, hives, and swelling of the lips, tongue, throat, and face; problems with ejaculation that continued after stopping medication; testicular pain; difficulty in achieving an erection that continued after stopping the medication; male infertility and/or poor quality of semen; and, in rare cases, male breast cancer. 

This question comes from a member of our hair loss social community and discussion forums:

In addition to hair loss, I also suffer from scalp dandruff. Since starting minoxidil (Rogaine), my scalp dandruff is worse. Is the Rogaine making my dandruff worse? What can I do to stop this?

RogaineAre you using the liquid or foam version of the 5% minoxidil? Scalp irritation and dryness, which can lead to increased flaking and dandruff, is sometimes seen with the liquid version of minoxidil. This is because the liquid solution – compared to the foam solution – contains a higher alcohol content and propylene glycol.

Because of the decreased alcohol content and lack of propylene glycol, most hair loss sufferers experience less scalp irritation and flaking dryness with the foam version. Hair loss experts normally advise patients experiencing scalp irritation to try switching from the liquid to the foam solution. This should alleviate some of the irritation and resulting dandruff!
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Blake – aka Future_HT_Doc

Editorial Assistant and Forum Co-Moderator for the Hair Transplant Network, the Hair Loss Learning

Center, the Hair Loss Q&A Blog, and the Hair Restoration Forum

Follow our community on Twitter

Watch hair transplant videos on YouTube

Technorati Tags: hair loss, , minoxidil,

I noticed my hair thinning a little more in the mid section and front of the scalp, it’s slow but noticeable to me and somehow the hair just seems weaker there and it falls out easier than the hair near my crown. I have been on Propecia (finasteride 1mg), for about a year and 3 months. I have been on Rogaine (minoxidil) Foam for 8 months and switched to liquid this previous 7 months. I have been applying it in the mornings while my hair is wet right out of the shower then blow drying it so it dries quicker.

I wash my hair with Paul Mitchell shampoo every morning and use his green tea formula once a week. I use biotin (10,000 mcg) every day. I also work out and consume protein called Triple Impact Protein by Nutrology and these pills called Omega Cuts which contain fish oil, which some people say increase hair loss. Is this true?

Is there something I could be taking or possibly do to decrease my balding?

sn-fishoilYou’re already using the two best medical treatments available. However, I would suggest towel-drying your hair thoroughly before applying minoxidil. I would also allow the minoxidil to dry for at least 15 minutes prior to applying styling products or blow-drying. You want the medication to be absorbed into the scalp.

This is stated on Rogaine’s own website FAQ:

I had a hair transplant on the crown and mid scalp of 2300 grafts roughly 10 months ago. Hair has come through but it’s still really fine and looks as if I’ve got no hair. My question is, how much time will it take to mature and also will I expect more hair growth?

growth meterTypically, at 10 months after hair transplant surgery, you should see about 90% of your final result. However, it’s often stated that hair regrowth in the crown tends to be a bit slower. Also, bear in mind that the newly grown hairs will start off very fine and light in color and will become darker and more robust over time, adding to the appearance of fullness.

Having said that, I highly recommend that you discuss your concerns with your hair restoration physician. Your doctor will likely advise you to wait out the full 12 months prior to assessing your final result. But, in the event that your results are subpar, your physician should be willing to work with you to ensure your satisfaction.

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David (TakingThePlunge)
Editorial Assistant and Forum Co-Moderator for the Hair Transplant Network, the Coalition Hair Loss Learning Center, and the Hair Loss Q & A Blog.
To share ideas with other hair loss sufferers visit the hair loss forum and social community.

Technorati Tags: hair transplant, , ,

CKWpiloscopeCoalition hair transplant surgeon Dr. Carlos Wesley‘s scarless FUE (Follicular Unit Extraction) or Piloscopy is one of the most highly anticipated future hair loss treatments developing today. The new and highly advanced nature of Piloscopy has made the testing and approval of the procedure a thorough and lengthy process. In a recent article written in “The Verge,” however, Dr. Wesley provides hopeful hair loss suffers with an exciting update.

In the article, Dr. Wesley discusses the device, what drove him to create such a novel procedure, and what patients can expect from Piloscopy. The piece explains what Dr. Wesley went through developing the new procedure, and may help eager patients understand Piloscopy’s potential.

Interested in reading more? If so, please see the following: Update on Scarless Surgery (Piloscopy). 

Stay tuned for more updates on Dr. Wesley’s scarless FUE!
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Blake – aka Future_HT_Doc

Editorial Assistant and Forum Co-Moderator for the Hair Transplant Network, the Hair Loss Learning

Center, the Hair Loss Q&A Blog, and the Hair Restoration Forum

Follow our community on Twitter

Watch hair transplant videos on YouTube

Technorati Tags: hair transplant, , Follicular Unit Extraction, , future hair loss treatments, hair loss

This below question was asked by a member of our Hair Loss Social Community and Discussion Forums and answered by recommended hair restoration surgeon Dr. Tejinder Bhatti.

How soon after a hair transplant strip removal can the scar have FUE grafts put into it? My last strip operation was in October and it’s already stretched significantly.

Also how long do you need to wait after a hair restoration surgery before doing follicular unit extraction into the previously transplanted area? I’m guessing at least 8 or 9 months to avoid planting grafts on top of previously planted ones that are still emerging.

Dr-Bhatti-photoIt takes a follicular unit strip surgery (FUSS) scar 18 months to become supple. This would be the best time to fill it with FUE grafts and disguise its straight line. If done earlier, graft take is certain to be less than optimal.

In response to your second question, 6 months is a long enough wait before we can go in again for a second harvest from the same donor area. For filling up a previously planted area, 9 months is a reasonable wait period.

Best wishes.

Dr. Tejinder Bhatti

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David (TakingThePlunge)
Editorial Assistant and Forum Co-Moderator for the Hair Transplant Network, the Coalition Hair Loss Learning Center, and the Hair Loss Q & A Blog.
To share ideas with other hair loss sufferers visit the hair loss forum and social community.

This question, from a member of our hair loss social community and discussion forums, was answered by Coalition hair transplant surgeon Dr. William Lindsey:

Hello everyone, I just recently had my second hair transplant about 5 weeks ago. I had a 1255 follicular unit extraction (FUE) procedure and have only minor reddening in the recipient area. I ride motocross which requires me to wear a helmet. I would like to get your opinions on how safe it is to wear a helmet this soon after hair restoration surgery. I don’t want to risk ruining my transplant. Any help with this would be greatly appreciated.

Dr_Lindsey_photoAt our practice we’ve now done 3 fighter pilots, 2 transport plane pilots, and a bunch of helicopter pilots, all of whom were “back in the helmet” by 3 weeks and one fighter pilot was back turning and burning at 12 days. Of all of them, he grew the earliest and the fastest, but helmets didn’t seem to alter their results.

Hair pieces are a different thing altogether as we’ve now seen several guys who appear to have trouble with hair growth and, while I can’t prove it, I highly suspect that hairpiece adhesive is to blame.

Dr. William Lindsey – McLean, VA

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David (TakingThePlunge)
Editorial Assistant and Forum Co-Moderator for the Hair Transplant Network, the Coalition Hair Loss Learning Center, and the Hair Loss Q & A Blog.
To share ideas with other hair loss sufferers visit the hair loss forum and social community.

This question comes from a member of our hair loss social community and discussion forums:

I was recently diagnosed with androgenic alopecia (male pattern hair loss). My doctor told me Propecia (finasteride) is one of the available options for patients in my situation. However, I did some research online and it seems like there is no guarantee it will work for me. How do I know if Propecia will treat my androgenic alopecia? How can I tell if finasteride will work for me?

Propecia BoxYour physician is correct; there are currently two medications approved for the treatment of androgenic alopecia: minoxidil (Rogaine) and finasteride (Propecia). Determining whether or not the medication will “work” for you is a difficult task. Each patient will respond slightly differently to any given drug. Some patients will respond well and reap the benefits; others may not; and some, unfortunately, will likely experience side effects without any of the intended benefits.

Keep a few things in mind: First, experts recommend taking Propecia (in the absence of side effects) for 6 to 12 months before determining whether or not it works for you. Second, finasteride can cause increased hair shedding during the first 3-4 months of taking the medication. This will resolve. Third, Propecia is a preventive hair loss treatment. This means individuals who are diagnosed with androgenic alopecia and start the drug at an early stage tend to respond better and retain more hair. Finally, remember that Propecia is technically approved for the cessation and partial restoration of hair loss in the vertex and mid-scalp only. Those with hair loss in the frontal hairline and temporal region may not see as much benefit from the drug.


I have been prescribed isotretinoin for my seborrheic dermatitis and I’m afraid that it might cause hair loss?

accutane-pillsThinning hair is one of the of the many known side effects of Accutane (isotretinoin). In many cases, this hair loss is temporary. However, for those susceptible to the effects of androgenic alopecia (genetic baldness), there is always a chance that these weakened hairs may not regrow.

I have no documentation to support this, but I suspect that Rogaine (minoxidil) may help to counter the increased balding from Accutane as it is a vasodilator that increases blood flow to the follicles. But, I would certainly discuss that with your dermatologist.

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David (TakingThePlunge)
Editorial Assistant and Forum Co-Moderator for the Hair Transplant Network, the Coalition Hair Loss Learning Center, and the Hair Loss Q & A Blog.
To share ideas with other hair loss sufferers visit the hair loss forum and social community.

Technorati Tags: , , , , , androgenic alopecia, , Rogaine, ,

This question comes from a member of our hair loss social community and discussion forum

I’m a female with a high, abnormally shaped hairline. My hairline looks more like a man’s suffering from androgenic alopecia than it does a normal female hairline. I’m not suffering from hair loss, but I do want to fix my hairline with surgery. What surgical options are available for a female with a high, abnormally shaped hairline?

hairline loweringWomen seeking surgical hairline restoration or reconstruction have two options:

The first is traditional hair transplant surgery. Hair transplantation, both via the follicular unit strip surgery (FUSS) and follicular unit extraction (FUE) method, is usually a good option for female hairline reconstruction. Female patients with high or abnormal hairlines generally do not suffer from diffuse female pattern hair loss and, therefore, possess a healthy supply of available donor grafts. These grafts can safely be used to rebuild the traditional low female hairline.

The second option is surgical hairline lowering. Female hairline lowering involves removing a strip of skin between the hairline and the forehead, physically moving the hairline to a lower position, and suturing it into place. Although this procedure is generally more invasive, the results are drastic. Those interested may want to consult with recommended hair transplant surgeon Dr. Sheldon Kabaker, who specializes in hairline lowering.
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Blake – aka Future_HT_Doc

Editorial Assistant and Forum Co-Moderator for the Hair Transplant Network, the Hair Loss Learning

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