View Full Version : 21 Years Old: Ruling out Telogen Effluvium

02-04-2016, 04:09 AM
Background info: A few weeks back, I began feeling paranoid about my hair. Something just didn't feel right. I kept playing around with it (it was pretty long) and couldn't quite put my finger on it. I'd ask people to look, only to get the typical "I don't see a thing" answer (bless them, as I know they don't mean harm, and it is quite a nice thing). This "something's off" feeling became exacerbated by what I noticed to be a wild increase in shedding. My hair was falling out in droves. In one day, I'd brush my hair and would leave behind a sizable clump in the brush. I'd shower right after, only to find a clump either similarly sized or larger in the drain. More hair than ever before would be falling out. (Possibly of note: I didn't always check the hair, but on the occasions I did, a white bulb WAS present at the root end).

I went to my GP, told himabout my hair falling out and that I was concerned about thinning/MPB. He asked me about family History, I told him that My dad has all his hair at 52. MY maternal uncles (dad has no brothers) all have their hair. MY maternal grandfather is 70 and has only mild temporal recession (NW2-3 in my best estimation). My paternal grandfather lost his hair in his 80's. He took a look at my scalp, and diagnosed me with Seborrheic Dermatitis (I was given Ketaconazole 2% shampoo), but said I didn't look like I was balding and said given my family's history, he doubted that I would experience MPB in the way I was describing. I asked for a dermatologist referral, he felt it wasn't necessary, but that I could ask again if this persisted.

About a month later, after going through the typical "my life is over, I'm going bald" stage (I cried, admittedly... lol), I was fed up and decided to buzz my hair (these are the pics I've included). It revealed what looks like seriously sparse hair on the top of my head and also the sides. I revisited the doc, who said verbatim: "I guess I can see why you'd be concerned about thinning..." and then went on to talk to me about propecia, rogaine, etc. I askd for blood tests, he said they werne't necessary as my thyroid and CBC tests had been fine a little while ago (IE: a couple of months ago)*****

This is where my story and my confusion are stemming from. I recently lost 100lbs over the course of one year. Near the end, I was concerned with blasting off any remaining body fat, and so (stupidly) I was eating literally 500-1000 calories a day, for a number of months, the entire summer of 2015 and a few months into fall). This continued up until one day when I felt terribly off. It happened suddenly, but I went through a Three week period of near nightly panic attacks, extreme fear/anxiety, terrible digestion symptoms... I still wasn't eating and in fact ate even less because of the digestive issues. I slept only 4 hours every 2-3 days, and even spent a little bit of time in the ER due to the exhaustion and everything. Eventually my doctor ordered an H.Pylori test (a stomach bacteria that causes a whole slew of things) and I came back positive. I was put on a week's worth of antibiotic (triple therapy they call it, stomch acid reducer and two antibiotics for 7 days). I've since recovered, though my stomach is still recovering, but the anxiety and the bacterial infection are definitely gone.

Here I am, about 2-3ish months after the episode and this is the situation I've found myself in. I know this is a beyond redundant topic to post, but I'm at a loss and wanted to consult people who have through this, either MPB or any other form of hairloss. My doctor won't do bloodtests for hormones/vitamins/nutrient deficiencies, looks at me like I'm making a big deal of this, but is quite ready to prescribe propecia... hmm. When I said no, his reply was to "just not think about it."

I've read a few threads asking this sort of question and I want to stress that I'm not *hoping* that this is Telogen Effluvium *instead of* MPB. I'm well aware it could be the latter, or both even, or that if it is T.E. it could "awaken" a susceptibility to MPB despite my family history -- and I'm, frankly, quite open to either. If I have to shave my head to the bone, I can deal with it and if my hair will grow back in full or even just some, I'd definitely be really thrilled. I'm asking because I feel like I'm being shafted by someone who doesn't have a roundabout understanding of hairloss and I don't know what to do, where to turn. I would love to switch doctors or visit any dermatologist, etc. but up until a bit ago I didn't even have healthcare and even still am at a loss of options financially. Such is life, and worse things have happened to much less deserving people, so believe me, I am beyond grateful for any and all replies, any advice, tips, experiences, etc. All I have are pictures that look like examples of diffuse thinning and telogen effluvium, and my story, so thank you so much in advance for the time and effort!

~All pictures are current, I blacked out either my face or the location/date and time. Image one if just for a general idea of hairline~