View Full Version : hair replacement vs. young age

04-13-2009, 03:00 PM

I'm alex and I'm 21. Why am I here writing this post?...there are 2 reasons why:
1st I've been losing my hair since I was 16
2nd I live in Romania and here I can get no help concerning my problem; in fact when I was 16 I went to the doctor to ask for help and after examining me she told me that I should go home and try to deal with my problem beacuse it's something genetical and she cannot do anything to help me. I think you can empathize with me hearing that from a doctor.

So how am I dealing? I've started to wear hats since I was 18...and now I do not imagine myself going outside without wearing one. I am a 3rd year medical student here in Bucharest and you can imagine I had many bad times trying to explain to my teachers my problem...most of the times I ended up embarassed in front of all my collegues (yes, all of my teachers are doctors so they should have been able to understand what I'm going throgh...but no)

Now I'm asking for your help because I cannot hide from others for the rest of my life and I really wanna solve, at least partially, my problem & a hair system seams to me the best option that I have now.

Where should I start? I cannot afford a trip to US so can I do everything in front of my computer and in the end to receive the hair system via. mail or something?

I am extremely happy I got the chance to find this forum on the internet and btw please excuse my english!

I'm waiting for your feedback soon!


Paul Straub, MD
04-13-2009, 05:03 PM
First and most important, you must begin to take one mg. of finasteride daily. This will stop or retard the progression of the balding, In double blinded studies 99% of the patients who took it daily lost no hair in the first five years whereas 100% of the group who were taking the placebo lost hair.

You are a medical student therefor you will understand this. Male pattern balding is an inherited trait. It is a sensitivity to the male hormones, particularly dihydrotesterone. Testosterone is converted to dihydrotestosterone by an enzyme called 5-alpha-reductase. Finasteride blocks type 2, 5-alpha-reductase.

In America this is sold under the brand name of Proscar (5 mg.) and Propecia (1 mg.)

Later, when you have completed medical school, and are older hair transplantation will be indicated.

04-14-2009, 12:00 AM
Thank you for your prompt reply. I will have in mind the possibility of starting the treatment but first I have to consider all my options : propecia / hair replacement systems & others (if there is something else to be considered as hair transplant is not indicated for my age group).

04-14-2009, 12:57 AM
In double blinded studies 99% of the patients who took it daily lost no hair in the first five years whereas 100% of the group who were taking the placebo lost hair.

Wasn't that closer to 80%?

04-14-2009, 01:15 AM
Wasn't that closer to 80%?

"In a 5-year study of men with mild to moderate hair loss, 48% of those treated with Propecia (finasteride 1 mg) experienced some regrowth of hair, and a further 42% had no further loss." quote wikipedia

so that makes 90% efficacy as far as this source says. Anyway 80%, 90% and 99% make a good average and shows that finasteride might really help. The bad news is that in 6-12 months after ceasing the therapy the hair gained or maintained is lost.

Paul Straub, MD
04-14-2009, 01:26 PM
The actual statistics are after five years in double blinded studies, with hair count measured by computer rather than estimated by appearance,

the group using finasteride: 66% had more hair than measured at the starting point.
33% had the same hair count
1% had less

the group using the placebo (same as not using the product)
100% had less

Clearly the negatives must always be discussed but would be extremely rare in a 21 year old.

04-15-2009, 04:12 AM
Very interesting to read Dr.

I was under the assumption (from the community here, forums elsewhere, and other sources) that propecia was more along the lines of a 75% success rate; Success being equated to extreme slowing/ near 100% maintenance in existing hair.

To hear that I have nearly a 100% chance to actually hold on to what I have, and yet another 66% chance to actually regrow a bit of hair = miracle. This is more than I could have asked for as a newbie to "proactively taking care of my hairloss".

Also, to those reading: Bear in mind that in most stages of baldness, you still have a lot of fine vellus hairs on your head. Propecia could actually turn those hairs around, resulting in what seems to be actual regrowth.

If you have the time, a few quick question for you Doc

- Has it been roughly a 99% success rate (feel free to define "success" with propecia) in your own clients?

- What is your take on Propecia actually turning vellus hairs, or hairs near vellus stage, back into actual full blown "healthy" hairs? (provided finasteride is a success for the said patient in the first place)

Paul Straub, MD
04-25-2009, 11:41 AM
This certainly does occur but I do not know accurately how often. One thing that I wanted to point out is that when the computer counts hairs it does not distinguish between velus hairs (thin) and terminal hairs (thicker).

What all patients want is an increase in "hair mass" This is the appearance of more hair and, among other things, is measured by the number of hairs multiplied by the diameter of the hairs.

Paul Straub, MD
04-26-2009, 02:45 PM
Success in using finasteride must be measured against not using it. This is one of the reasons that there must always be a double-binded group on a placebo. We must measure results from using a treatment against not using it. In the case of Propecia over five years every patient that did not use it lost some hair. The way this was measured was a small dot was tattooed in the back where there was some thinning. Then once a year the hair over the dot was trimmed leaving only dark spots. The tattooed dot was centered in a scanner and the computer would count the hairs. Every patient on the placebo lost hair in the five year period. (Remember they choose men for the study who were losing hair.) And 99% of the men taking Propecia had the same number of hairs, or more after five years. However the hair count was diminishing each year and looking ahead one could expect a time when the patient would have less hair then when he began using the product. We must, however, compare it to what
happened to the men who didn't take it (The placebo group) and they lost a lot more hair.