Ever since I can remember, barbers have been telling me about how many cowlicks i have. In particular I have a few that connect to form almost a zigzag on the crown of my head. I understand that cowlicks usually give the appearance of a bald patch but I was wondering if you could look at my photo and tell me what you think. Does it look like a crazy cowlick or early signs of hair loss. I don’t know of any family history of male pattern baldness and I haven’t noticed any extra hair shedding.
This question was posed by a hair loss sufferer on our hair restoration forum and answered by Dr. Michael Beehner of Saratoga Springs, NY who is one of our recommended hair restoration physicians. His professional answer is below.
I had an 18 year old young man in my hair restoration clinic yesterday with that exact same complaint. The best way to be certain it is not an early sign of male pattern hair loss is simply to have your nearby hair loss doctor (medical or surgical) examine the area under high magnification for any signs of hair miniaturization. If there is none (or less than 2-3%, which is pretty much normal), then there is no sign that you are going to lose hair in that area probably for the next 10-15 years.
In a person with a single tone of dark hair and a fairly light scalp, any place where there is a change of direction of the hairs pattern, it will appear in good light that it might be thinning hair. This happens often with women who have a change of hair direction up the center of their front scalp and think they are losing hair, when it is only the divergence of hair revealing the skin a small amount. When we look at hair and it looks “full”, part of the reason it does so is because of the overlap of hairs over one another. In performing hair replacement surgery, where we never come close to restoring the original hair density someone had at age 15, we depend upon this overlapping of hair to help us create the illusion of full hair density.
Mike Beehner, M.D.
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