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Hair Restoration Answers

Are Topical DHT Blockers as Effective as Oral Finasteride?

Q: What is more important against baldness, decreasing DHT in serum with oral finasteride or decreasing DHT in the scalp with topical finasteride? — A.G. ~ Brooklyn, N.Y.

A: Decreasing serum DHT with oral finasteride is more effective in combating hair loss, as the decreased blood levels decrease the DHT in follicles and seem to do it better than finasteride applied topically.

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Hair Restoration Research

Dr. Christiano Discovers JAK Inhibitors as Potential New Topical Treatment for Hair Loss

Dr. Angela Christiano and her team of researchers at Columbia University studying the autoimmune disease Alopecia areata, have shed new light on how to move hair follicles from their resting (telogen) stage into the anagen phase where they can produce normal hairs. Their study, published in the October issue of Science Advances, introduces the possibility of a new topical medication for hair growth. The finding has implications in the treatment of androgenetic alopecia (common hair loss) as well as Alopecia areata, which causes a non-scarring form of localized hair loss.

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Hair Restoration Research

Melatonin Solution Found to Reverse Early Hair Loss in Men and Women

International Journal of Trichology - Oct-Dec 2012Topical application of the solution containing melatonin, ginkgo biloba and biotin was found to reduce hair loss, and in some cases grow new hair. Incidence of seborrhea was also reduced by the treatment. While the exact mechanism for this result is unknown, if effective, it is likely related to the antioxidative effect of melatonin and/or a melatonin receptor-mediated antiandrogenic effects. More research on melatonin needs to be conducted, but this study acts as a proof of concept for the use of melatonin as a treatment for early hair loss in men and women and potentially as a treatment for seborrhea.

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Hair Restoration Research

How Does Minoxidil Work? A Review Of Recent Research

Since 1993, minoxidil has been the most successful topical treatment for hair loss in both men and women, yet its exact mechanism of action remains unknown.

A 2004 review of minoxidil’s possible mechanisms of action (A.G. Messenger & J. Rundegren, 2004) suggests that the best evidence supports the idea that minoxidil causes hair follicles in the later phases of their resting phase (telogen) to shift prematurely into an active growth phase (anagen) sooner than they otherwise would; this causes rapid increase in hair growth. They also found good evidence that minoxidil works to thicken the hair by increasing hair diameter.

While minoxidil’s effects on other critical factors known to affect hair growth — such as cell proliferation, collagen synthesis, vascular endothelial growth factor and prostaglandin synthesis — remain uncertain, more recent research has found evidence that it may also suppress the androgen-androgen receptor responsible for androgenetic alopecia (Cheng-Lung Hsu, Jai-Shin Liu,An-Chi Lin, Chih-Hsun Yang, Wen-Hung Chung, & Wen-Guey Wu, 2014).

Understanding minoxidil’s exact mechanism of action remains today an important line of research both for the development of better hair loss treatments and for a better understanding of the biology of hair growth.

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