What did we learn about hair loss in 2016?2016 was an exciting year with multiple breakthroughs in hair loss research, giving much needed hope to alopecia patients. Here are some of the highlights:

Ruxolitinib for alopecia areata

American researchers managed to successfully treat a female patient with the autoimmune disorder of alopecia areata by using a topical solution of Jakafi (ruxolitnib). The patient massaged the topical cream on her scalp and her eyebrows, twice a day for twelve weeks and displayed complete restoration of hair growth on her eyebrows, and partial regrowth on her scalp. After the twelve week trial, she was given a pill form of Jakafi which has now restored full healthy hair growth on her scalp. Despite such long term use, the patient only suffered minimal side effects.

The qilib hair ststem

The qilib Hair Regrowth and Revilatization System was introduced and showed positive clinical results within four weeks. The formula is made up of prescription strength minoxidil and natural botanics. It is specially formulated for both men (5% minoxidil) and women (2% minoxidil). The qilib system is aimed not only at patients of hair loss, but also of hair thinning. The solution is now available in a spray bottle for easiness in application.

A link between PCOS and male pattern baldness?

A study published in JAMA Dermatology looked at the phenotypic resemblance between men who had early androgenetic alopecia (AGA) and women who had polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). The study focused on hormonal profiles of the men with early AGA and found that they closely resembled with women who had PCOS – this means that men who have early AGA can be considered the male phenotypic equivalents of women who have PCOS. In terms of medicine, this suggests early AGA patients are at risk of developing similar medical complications that PCOS patients are at risk of.

Tofacitinib for alopecia areata

Researchers at Yale School of Medicine found conclusive evidence that taking Xeljanz (tofacitinib) twice a day can give hope to patients of alopecia areata. More than half of participants had hair regrowth and recovered at least 50% of their initial hair loss on their scalp within twelve weeks with little to no side effects.

Platelet rich plasma

A study by Universitat Internacional de Catalunya in Barcelona, Spain found that application of platelet rich plasma can have a therapeutic effect on androgenetic alopecia, meaning it can be safely used as a complementary treatment along with other treatment methods.

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By Ian Watson

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