Thinning of the hair
If you think your hair is thinning, although you do not have any real baldness, it is important to check that this is actually the case. Try the tug test, and remember that it is normal to lose 50–100 hairs a day. Sometimes, thinning of the hair can be entirely in the mind, as a symptom of depression.
Some drugs that may cause hair thinning
- Lipid-lowering drugs (statins, clofibrate, bezafibrate)
- Anticancer drugs
- ACE inhibitors for blood pressure or heart failure (ramipril, captopril, enalapril, lisinopril)
- Calcium antagonists for blood pressure (amlodipine)
- Blood-thinning drugs (warfarin)
- Drugs for gout (allopurinol)
- Antimalarials (chloroquine)
- Drugs for epilepsy (valproate sodium, vigabatrin)
- Drugs for Parkinson’s disease (for example, pramipexole, bromocriptine)
- Anti-thyroid drugs (carbimazole, propylthiouracil)
- Anti-acne drugs (isotretinoin)
- Mood-stabilizing drugs (lithium, valproic acid)
Written by: Dr Margaret Stearn
Edited by: Dr Margaret Stearn
Last updated: Friday, February 26th 2010
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We each have about 100 000 hairs on the scalp
It is normal to lose 50-100 hairs from the head each day
Each hair on the head grows for about 5 years before being shed
Eyebrow hairs grow for only 10 weeks
Scalp hair grows at a rate of about 1 cm (just under half an inch) a month
A survey has shown that about 7.9 million men and 1.6 million women in the UK have hair loss problems
Each year, American men spend about $900 million on efforts to regrow hair
In the USA and UK, there has not been a bald President or Prime Minister since the television age began
In Old Master paintings, saints are often depicted as bald