It is common for doctors and other medical professionals to recommend that Alopecia sufferers start using Minoxidil. But does it actually work?
Minoxidil claims to improve hair growth by increasing the supply of blood and nutrients to the scalp, and subsequently the hair follicles. Reports of success rates are mixed, with some users reporting positive results, whilst others believe the use of Minoxidil is a complete waste of time.
Channel 4 (in the UK) hosts a show called Embarrasing Bodies, in which members of the public are filmed in a mobile clinic, asking for advice about a variety of medical conditions. Series 2 (Episode 5) featured a lady called Caroline, who visited the clinic to seek help for her long term, patchy hair loss.
Dr Christian immediately diagnosed Alopecia Areata, and advised Caroline that there is no known cure for the condition, although there were treatments available to combat the symptoms such as steroids and Minoxidil. Video below.
In Series 4 (Episode 22), Caroline returned to the clinic to report her progress. It would appear that her regular use of Minoxidil had improved her situation somewhat. Watch the video below and judge for yourself.
It is always difficult to make a judgement when cases like Carolines arise. We know that Minoxidil does not provide satisfactory results in most cases, as reported by many of our clients, but every now and then it does produce good results, which is why Minoxidil continues to maintain our interest. Alopecia Areata symptoms are also temporary, so how much of an indication do cases like Carolines provide, in the context of old fashioned male or female pattern baldness?
If you want to try Minoxidil, the most well known product on the market is Regaine (called Rogaine in the US), however there are other products available that also contain Minoxidil, such as Provillus.
More information about Carolines case can be found on the Embarrasing Bodies website.