Dr. Ayush PandeyMBBS,PG Diploma

November 27, 2018

September 12, 2023


Baldness, another term for alopecia, is the loss of hair from the scalp. Losing a few strands is quite normal as they grow back in most people, but as age progresses this may not be the case. Patterned hair loss is seen in both sexes after puberty. It is found that starting at the age of 35 years, two-third men experience baldness and 40% have noticeable hair loss. In India, 0.7% of the population experiences baldness.

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Baldness Symptoms

It can appear in different forms depending on the factors causing baldness. It may cause sudden or slow baldness and may affect your scalp or the entire body. It can be permanent or temporary.

The major signs and symptoms include

  • Progressive thinning
  • Slow weakening of hairs on the top of your head
  • Circular or patchy spots
  • Sudden loss of hair
  • Complete hair loss
  • Scaly patches spreading over the scalp region

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Baldness Causes

It can be genetic or acquired. Androgenetic alopecia (more than 95%) is the commonest cause among male hair loss.

  • Hereditary - It is familial and occurs with ageing and is predictable.
  • Hormonal Changes and Medical Conditions - Pregnancy, menopause, thyroid disorders, and scalp infections may be responsible for hair loss.
  • Drug Related - Drugs used for cancerarthritisdepressiongout, and blood pressure problems can cause baldness.
  • Radiation Therapy - Exposure to harmful radiation may result in permanent loss of hair.
  • Stress​ - Stress and emotional or physical shock may be responsible for hair loss.
  • Hair Treatments - Hairstyles, such as tight ponytail or cornrows, can cause traction alopecia.
  • Nutritional Deficiency - Lack of essential amino acids especially lysine can lead to baldness.

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Diagnosis of Baldness

Your doctor may perform a physical examination before making a diagnosis. Along with this, the doctor can take your past medical information and also ask about family diseases. Apart from this, the doctor can also do some other tests, which may include the following -

  • Blood test - This can help uncover problems associated with hair loss such as thyroid disease.
  • Scalp biopsy - The doctor may remove some samples from the scalp to help determine whether an infection is causing the hair loss.

There are effective treatments available for some types of baldness, but some problems associated with baldness are permanent. In some conditions, such as alopecia, hair often grows and grows back on its own without treatment within a year.

Baldness Treatment

The main goal of its treatment is to reduce baldness, prevent it, and help in hair growth.

Treatment of baldness includes medicines, surgery, wigs (fake hair), and hairpieces. All these methods are used together to get a good result.

The most common type of baldness is male-patient baldness, which does not require treatment because this problem occurs with age and does not pose any serious threat to the body. Some treatment options are as follows -


  • Minoxidil - This medicine is applied to the head. This medicine prevents hair from becoming weak and also stimulates hair to grow. (Read more - Tips for hair growth)
  • Finasteride - This medicine is used for men suffering from baldness. These medicines come in tablets, which reduce the problem of hair fall in most men. It also stimulates hair regrowth.

Note: Before starting any of the above medicines, consult a doctor once.

Hair Transplant

In this, skin is lifted from those parts of the body where hair grows, and that skin is placed on the baldness area. This leaves minor marks on the body and there is also a possibility of infection. This process requires a lot of time, and can also be expensive.

Wigs and Hairpieces

If baldness does not respond to medical treatment, trying a wig may be a cheaper option. It is used to cover both permanent and temporary baldness. Good quality and natural-looking wigs and hairpieces are available.

Supplements (Dietary Supplements)

If you are already well nourished, adding nutritional supplements may not be helpful.

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  1. Healthy Male. Hair loss and balding. Monash University; Australian Government Department of Health.
  2. Dinesh Gowda, V Premalatha, and DB Imtiyaz. Prevalence of Nutritional Deficiencies in Hair Loss among Indian Participants: Results of a Cross-sectional Study. Int J Trichology. 2017 Jul-Sep; 9(3): 101–104. PMID: 28932059
  3. Indian Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism. Association of androgenetic alopecia with metabolic syndrome: A case–control study on 100 patients in a tertiary care hospital in South India. Endocrine Society of India. [internet]
  4. Mrinal Gupta, Venkataram Mysore. Classifications of Patterned Hair Loss: A Review. J Cutan Aesthet Surg. 2016 Jan-Mar; 9(1): 3–12. PMID: 27081243
  5. Health Harvard Publishing. Harvard Medical School [Internet]. Treating female pattern hair loss. Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Medicines for Baldness

Medicines listed below are available for Baldness. Please note that you should not take any medicines without doctor consultation. Taking any medicine without doctor's consultation can cause serious problems.