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Dr. Wolfeld on Dr. Oz Show Discusses Women’s Hair Loss, JAK Inhibitors and Minoxidil

December 12th, 2016

Dr. Wolfeld on Dr. Oz Show - 10/26/16Dr. Michael Wolfeld was featured on the Dr. Oz Show where he was interviewed by Dr. Mehmet Oz. They discussed misconceptions about women’s hair loss, promising reports of JAK inhibitors in treating alopecia areata, and the use of the men’s 5% minoxidil solution for female patients.

According to Dr. Wolfeld, the biggest misconception women have about their hair loss is that there are no treatments for thinning hair.

“Many women don’t realize that something can actually be done to treat their thinning hair.”

He suggests that the best way to determine the avenue of treatment is to have a consultation with a physician who specializes in hair loss. If there are signs that the thinning is not due to androgenetic alopecia (common genetic balding), a biopsy can be performed to determine the diagnosis of the hair loss and potential treatments.

Dr. Oz asked Dr. Wolfeld about a cancer drug that may be developed into a treatment to grow hair. Dr. Wolfeld mentioned ruxolitinib, a drug in the family of JAK Inhibitors, which is used to treat bone marrow cancer and other inflammatory conditions.

“They have also found in the lab that ruxolitinib is able to treat hair loss, specifically alopecia areata, which is an autoimmune type of hair loss that affects up to 2% of the population.”

Dr. Wolfeld and Dr. Oz Discuss JAK InhibitorsDr. Wolfeld and Dr. Oz discuss JAK inhibitors

Recent studies have shown that JAK inhibitors may be a safe and effective treatment for alopecia areata, a condition in which inflammatory activity in the scalp results in localized patches of balding. The JAK inhibitors were found to significantly reverse the balding from this condition. JAK inhibitors may also be able to treat the more resistant subtypes of alopecia areata; alopecia totalis, alopecia universalis, and ophiasis pattern alopecia areata; in which the inflammation can result in very extensive and cosmetically disfiguring hair loss.

Dr. Oz then asked Dr. Wolfeld about the most common treatment for hair loss in women. Dr. Wolfeld said that the most common treatment is minoxidil, which is the active ingredient in the over-the-counter hair loss medication Rogaine. Minoxidil 2% for women is recommended because it is more dilute and usually less irritating than the men’s 5% solution [which contains propylene glycol] and so it is easier on women’s scalps. However, the 5% men’s solution can be more effective in regrowing and thickening hair in female patients.

Dr. Wolfeld Discusses Minoxidil for Women on Dr. Oz ShowDr. Wolfeld discusses minoxidil for women on Dr. Oz Show

“The 5% solution [containing propylene glycol] may irritate the scalp a little more, it may cause a little more inflammation by using the higher percentage, but women willing to try the 5% men’s solution have seen positive results.”

Michael B. Wolfeld MD FACS is a board certified plastic surgeon and an Assistant Clinical Professor of Plastic Surgery at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York. At Bernstein Medical, he performs hair restoration procedures using the newest technologies and treatments – including the ARTAS® Robotic Hair Transplant system and PRP therapy.

Dr. Wolfeld Discusses Minoxidil for Women on Dr. Oz Show
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