This following article was written by Coalition hair restoration physician Dr. William Lindsey and posted on our Hair Restoration Social Community and Discussion Forums.
With rare exception, male pattern baldness is a combination of bad genes and bad luck. Hair loss is generally not caused by water, vitamin deficiency, diet, radio waves hitting the scalp, or cell phone use: all of which have been alleged to induce balding by various patients consulting with me since Jan 1 2011. This does not include the hypotheses that I heard last year or the year before, etc.
You get your genetic potential for androgenic alopecia from both parents. If everyone on both sides of your family is bald, I’d say you have “bad genes” (with regard to your potential for hair loss). If no one is bald, you have good genes. But, as many bloggers know, there are gobs of examples of bald families with one kid having a full head of hair AND there are gobs of examples of hair filled families with a bald decedent. That is the luck component. It’s probably genetic also, but scientists are not yet able to detect the nuances of the genetic code and all of the pre-destined variables one is “born with”.
So, as all patients to my office hear: If you have good genes, you may have good luck and not lose much hair or any at all. But, if you have bad genes, you ought to be conservative about how you spend your hair transplant donor hair as you may need a lot of it in the future. Which means, for younger patients with a significant history of major hair loss in their family, I’d push for a very conservative hairline and avoid transplanting the crown until it looks like the front is not “going”.
William H. Lindsey, MD, FACS