I do not want or have decided that I’m not a good candidate for a hair transplant. How can I manage my hair loss?
It should be noted first hand that hair transplantation does NOT manage hair loss. Learn more about hair transplantation here.
There are only two hair loss medications approved by the FDA for hair loss. These are are finasteride (marketed as Propecia) and Minoxodil (marketed as Rogaine). Both hair loss medications can be effective means to help you maitain your existing hair. Less common, however possible, people have re-grown some hair.
There is another medication that can be considered in the event that Propecia doesn’t work or loses it’s efficacy called Avodart which contains dutasteride. Please understand that this medication has not been approved for Male Pattern Baldness at least not at this point. I recall at one point, for some unknown reason, testing as a treatment for hair loss was discontinued. If testing has resumed, I am unaware of it.
Please understand that these hair loss medications are NOT miracle cures. For those who are trying to do something about their hair loss in the early stages, medication may be an effective treatment alone. However, most people with extensive hair loss find that these treatments are simply not enough. This is why many consider hair transplantation.
Finasteride (Propecia Vs Proscar)
Finasteride acts as an inhibitor of the hormone Dihydrotestosterone (DHT) – the hormone responsible for hair loss. Finasteride in the form of Propecia comes in 1mg tablets taken orally and typically runs about $190 for a 3 month supply. If you want to save money, you can get Proscar which comes in 5mg tablets of finasteride. Buy a pill splitter at any local pharmacy and cut the pill into quarters. Instead of taking 1 Propecia pill a day, you end up taking ¼ Proscar pill a day. Though the finasteride is not evenly distributed in the pill, many hair restoration doctors stand by that it’s just as effective as Propecia. It has been stated that finasteride in your body lasts up to 72 hours. Because of this, some hair loss doctors have made cases why you only need to take .5mg of finasteride a day.
My personal opinion, however, is, if you are already on finasteride taking 1mg a day, don’t switchâ€¦you don’t want to risk further loss after the switch. But if you are new to the medicine, WITH a doctor’s recommendation only, it might be worth a shot.
It has been said that finasteride works primarily in the crown area of the head, however, many have reported that it can prevent future hair loss over all.
Minoxodil (Rogaine Vs Generic)
Minoxodil is a topical liquid or foam that increases circulation to the scalp facilitating hair growth. Minoxodil is marketed as Rogaine but can also be bought in generic forms. You can buy 2% or 5% minoxodil. The 5% is more effective, however, in liquid form, it can cause scalp irritation – though it doesn’t for everyone. I have not personally tried Rogaine Foam, but I’ve heard that it’s less irritating on the scalp and applies easier too. It might be worth trying that if you don’t mind the messy regime of minoxodil. It is recommended to use minoxodil twice a day, however, many people swear by it’s use once a day. It should also be known that minoxodil primarily works on the crown, however, some apply it in the hairline as well and have sworn by its efficacy.
Though Avodart is not FDA approved for hair loss, this medication works similarly to and is much stronger than Propecia. Therefore, it might be possible to be an even more effective treatment for hair loss. However, without sufficient testing, one cannot state this with certainty.
SCAMS and So Called “Miracle Cures”
IMPORTANT: Do NOT be duped by “miracle” cure medicines that are out thereâ€¦they are all SCAMS. There are a number of them. The majority of these products are advertised as “too good to be true” formulas promising the world, but let me assure you, they will always under-deliver.
Strangely, some of these “miracle” scam medications may even start to workâ€¦.so why? If they are scams, then why am I noticing some new hair re-growth? See the next paragraph below.
Some of the “miracle” cures will claim that they are FDA approved for hair loss. Againâ€¦do NOT be deceived. They can get away with saying this legally, because they will somehow incorporate minoxodil into their product and then say it’s FDA approved. Since minoxodil is the ONLY proven entity in their formula, I encourage you to buy minoxodil directly and save yourself a LOAD of money. This is why, some of these scam products will actually WORK to re-grow some new hair. It is still considered a scam because they over promise and under-deliver and they are basically selling you minoxodil at an extremely high price whereas the rest of the “formula” doesn’t do anything for your hair loss condition.
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