Dr. Jeffrey Epstein founded the Women’s Center for Hair Loss to help women diagnosed with premature balding. While many associate balding with men, female pattern balding accounts for four out of ten of the nation’s hair loss sufferers. Women often work harder to hide their hair loss.
While it’s socially acceptable for a man to lose his hair, people tend to talk more about women who have distinct bald areas. This can lead to embarrassment and lowered self-esteem. The truth is that women can lose their hair and, like men, there are things women can do to help restore hair to bald or thinning areas.
With women, the hair loss progression differs from a man. Hair often thins out along the hair’s natural part or at the crown. Female pattern hair loss cannot be treated in the same way that a man’s hair loss is handled. As a result, a hair transplant surgeon must be skilled in treating female pattern balding. Dr. Epstein has decades of experience treating both men and women.
Causes of Female Pattern Balding
Women have a form of the male hormone known as testosterone that can be the reason some women end up with hair follicles that stop producing hairs. When the female hormones like estrogen lower even slightly, testosterone levels can relatively increase and lead to hair loss. This form of hair loss is called androgenetic alopecia. The hormone imbalances that lead to androgenetic alopecia can be caused by menopause, birth control pills, ovarian cysts, and pregnancy.
Anagen Effluvium is another cause of female pattern hair loss. It’s caused by a change that impacts the hair follicle’s cell division during growth. Most women who have this form of hair loss are undergoing chemotherapy.
Another cause of female pattern hair loss is stress on the body. This stress has to be traumatic to the body. You’ll find these stressors include giving birth, undergoing a surgery, developing a serious infection, or failing to eat a proper diet. Telogen Effluvium impacts upwards of 90 percent of your hair and can lead to rapidly shedding hair. The good news is that this form of hair loss is often temporary. The hair’s growth cycle returns to normal once the traumatic stress passes.
Finally, Traction Alopecia is a form of hair loss that is preventable. To avoid this form of hair loss, you need to avoid wearing tight hair styles. Braids, tight pony tails, buns, and cornrows are all hair styles that can pull on the hair and lead to hair loss.
Surgical Solutions to Female Pattern Hair Loss
Hair transplant surgeries allow women to have a surgeon transplant healthy hair follicles from the back or side of the head to the areas of balding. Within a few days, you’ll be back to your normal routine.
For women who have lost hair along the front of the scalp, an alternative treatment to hair grafting may be a surgical hairline advancement procedure, which can lower the hairline by as much as an inch or more in a single step. Because it requires a loose scalp, if your skin is not lax enough, balloon expanders may be placed under the scalp to help gently stretch the skin. Once stretched, the hairline is pulled down the forehead, excess skin is removed, and the incision is closed.
Dr. Epstein has used balloon expanders to get the most advancement of hairlines with the single procedure. This process takes approximately two to three months. Once the skin has expanded, the hairline can be advanced forward, then the incision sutured. Once the incision heals, the healthy hair follicles in the remaining skin fill in the area where the bald spot was located. Not every hair surgeon is skilled in this procedure, but Dr. Epstein is.
View before and after photos of female hair restoration procedures. In each picture, the changes may be subtle, in other cases dramatic. Talk to Dr. Epstein about your own experience with hair loss and see what he can do to help you restore your hair. Reach his New York office by calling (212) 759-3484. The triple board certified facial plastic surgeon is also available in Miami at (305) 666-1774.