Hair loss is an event that a majority of men will encounter in their lives, with nearly two-thirds of American men experiencing some amount of hair loss by age 35. Hair loss is a multi-billion dollar industry. But unfortunately, some of the popular treatments for hair loss can cause erectile dysfunction as a side effect! Thankfully, a host of treatment options are available for men who want to retain both their looks and a good sex life at the office of Hayle Aldren, MD, in Phoenix. Dr. Aldren provides the latest natural and medical treatments for hair loss that preserve your sex life while keeping your head of hair healthy and fuller, longer. To learn more, call Dr. Aldren to schedule your consultation today.
Hair Loss Q & A
- What are the most common kinds of hair loss?
- What causes hair loss?
- How is hair loss treated?
What are the most common kinds of hair loss?
By far the most common is Male Pattern Hair Loss (MPHL), also known as androgenic or androgenetic alopecia (AGA). The hairline starts receding at the temples, and later on top of the head. Hairs gradually get thinner and more breakable, and finally lose color, as the shedding of hair increases and the extent of hair loss spreads. This kind of hair loss is believed to be partly genetic and partly hormonal. Hair loss is progressive if not treated.
Less common is Alopecia Areata (AA), an autoimmune condition, where hair loss occurs in patchy bald spots, sometimes in unusual locations. The amount of hair loss can range from a single spot to losing hair everywhere on the whole body. Other kinds of hair loss are due to thyroid problems or can occur as a result of medical procedures or drugs.
What causes hair loss?
Hereditary and hormonal hair loss (AGA) is the most common cause of hair loss in men (and surprisingly in women, whose hair loss pattern is more diffuse all over the head). Other non- hereditary forms of hormone imbalance cause hair loss as well. Unsuspected thyroid conditions, like an underactive thyroid, overactive thyroid, or autoimmune thyroiditis (Hashimoto’s) can also accompany other kinds of hair loss, making things worse if not discovered and treated. Unfortunately, some treatable thyroid abnormalities may not show up on standard annual blood test panels.
Besides autoimmune conditions like AA and lupus, you can also lose hair due to stress, major surgery, high fever, crash diets, nutritional deficiencies, and hair styling that tugs on or overheats the hair. Fungus infections of the scalp are notorious for causing hair loss. They might be obvious but could be subtle and overlooked.
Medical treatments might also lead to hair loss, such as radiation therapy or chemotherapy. Some medications for conditions like gout, high blood pressure, or depression might cause hair loss as well.
How is hair loss treated?
As a practitioner licensed in both integrative medicine, and in modern Western medicine, Dr. Aldren provides hair loss treatments to best suit your needs:
Platelet-rich-plasma (PRP) injections are Dr. Aldren’s preferred method of treating hair loss. With this treatment, Dr. Aldren injects a solution of PRP created from your own blood into the exact regions of your scalp where the hair follicles (roots) live. PRP acts like fertilizer for the hair roots and increases blood supply to help hair grow. The effects of treatment continue even after a treatment series is completed. Periodic cycles of treatment can help maintain healthier hair. Learn more here.
Infrared therapy helmet / Laser phototherapy
When applied to the scalp, it’s shown that regular treatments of specialized light therapy, including certain infrared light waves, can stimulate hair growth in different kinds of hair loss. Using a special helmet (resembling a bike helmet), Dr. Aldren can provide treatments to bolster hair growth and improve your hair density. When using an optimal wavelength (678 nm) at low heat, hair roots get more than twice the stimulation other devices can provide.
The change in our internal hormone balance as we age is one reason we can lose hair. When hormones are prescribed as a medical treatment, the resulting shifts in hormone balance can also sometimes trigger hair loss. Hormone replacement therapy that is not personalized, or is not regularly monitored with the right kind of laboratory testing, can be a cause of hair loss. For example, too much testosterone or DHEA in the wrong proportions will knock out hair roots. By measuring hormone levels, including thyroid, with ultrasensitive tests, Dr. Aldren can find and correct hidden hormone imbalances that might be causing your hair to fall out.
Conventional hair loss medical treatments include minoxidil (Rogaine cream or foam), finasteride (Propecia, Proscar), and dutasteride (Avodart). The best results seem to come from combining minoxidil with either of the pills, but the improvement disappears as soon as treatment stops. It can take anywhere from several months to a couple years of continuous use before these treatments might start working.
Side effects are not uncommon and include loss of sex drive, temporary or permanent hormone imbalance, erectile dysfunction, depression, brain fog, fatigue, reduced sexual sensation, problems with ejaculation and orgasm, and gynecomastia (male breast enlargement or “man boobs”). In some men, these problems continue even after stopping the drug.
If you decide these side effects are not worth it, Dr. Aldren can offer alternatives. If you feel you can’t go without them, Dr. Aldren can take steps to help you try to minimize their side effects.
Autoimmune hair loss has shown improvement with low-dose naltrexone (LDN), but it is important to simultaneously treat any temporary increase in fungal overgrowth or infection. Cooling hair roots with various types of cryotherapy can also combat hair loss. Research is also underway to study how cannabidiol (CBD) may be beneficial for hair follicles.
Is your hair thinning, or does hair loss run in your family? Are you looking for an approach that doesn’t have sexual side effects? Let the office of Dr. Hayle Aldren, MD, MD(H), in Phoenix provide an effective path to keeping a head full of hair. Call to schedule your consultation today.