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What is Androgenetic Alopecia?

What is Androgenetic Alopecia?

Androgenetic alopecia (AGA), also known as pattern-balding, is the most common type of hair loss. It is hereditary and progressive, worsening with age.

The presence of DHT, an androgen hormone derived from testosterone, combined with genetics, are responsible for the most common type of hair loss known as androgenetic alopecia (AGA). A form of testosterone called DHT, is produced in the skin of both men AND women. When DHT is present on the scalp, it causes hair loss in those genetically susceptible by continuously shrinking healthy follicles. Shrinking hair follicles produce weaker, thinner hair with each cycle of growth. Eventually a follicle may stop producing any hair altogether. 

The majority of permanent hair loss is a result of androgentic alopecia. Androgenetic alopecia (AGA) can be treated with early intervention (see stages in green below) using medically accepted treatment methods such as photobiomodulation with Xtrallux technology.

 How to Identify Male Pattern & Female Pattern Hair loss

With so many types of hair loss, how can you identify the type of hair loss you have to know how to treat it? If hair loss runs in your family and you suspect it may be affecting your hair, early intervention is key. Industry experts estimate that 50% of your hair may be gone by the time you begin to notice it. 

Androgenetic alopecia can usually be identified by distinct patterns of thinning & balding which are different in men and women.

Male Pattern Balding

Norwoood Hamilton Hair Loss Classification for Men

Men's hair loss pattern typically begins with recession of the frontal hairline, exposing more forehead than in youth. This recession deepens over time and begins to look like a letter "M". Additionally, men may begin to see thinning in the vertex area on the crown of the head. In most cases, men do not see this thinning themselves until someone else with a better view of the back of their heads alerts them. In the more advanced stages of hair loss, the areas of recession begin to approach the thinning area at the crown, with a barely visible bridge of hair dividing the two areas. Please note that treatments for hair loss are only viable in the mild to moderate stages where hair follicles are still viable and capable of producing hair. If you hair loss is too advanced (Va, VI, VII), hair transplantation may be your only option.

Female Pattern Balding

Ludwig Savin Hair Loss Classifications for WomenWomen's pattern hair loss is different from that of men and is characterized with an overall thinning which is diffuse. The first visible signs of hair loss in women is a widening of the part. The hair becomes thinner at the top with more scalp visible as the middle parts widens. This occurs because the hair becomes more sparse overall, allowing more of the scalp to be visible at the part. This part widens over time and is generally more pronounced at the top of the scalp. Hair becomes thinner towards the front but usually the hairline stays intact.  It rarely leads to complete baldness but is no less traumatic.

The good news is that pattern hair loss (androgenetic alopecia) can be treated if addressed early. Early action is paramount.
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