Alopecia in women; Baldness - female; Hair loss in women; Androgenetic alopecia in women
Female pattern baldness involves a typical pattern of hair loss in women, due to hormones, aging, and genes.
A hair grows from its follicle at an average rate of about 1/2 inch per month. Each hair grows for 2 to 6 years, then rests, and then falls out. A new hair soon begins growing in its place. At any time, about 85% of the hair is growing and 15% is resting.
Baldness occurs when hair falls out and normal new hair does not grow in its place. The reason why new hair does not grow in female pattern baldness is not well understood, but it may be related to:
Hair loss can occur in women for reasons other than female pattern baldness, including the following:
Habif TP. Hair diseases. In: Habif TP, ed. Clinical Dermatology. 5th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Mosby Elsevier; 2009:chap 24.
Mousney AL, Reed SW. Diagnosis and treating hair loss. Am Fam Physician. 2009;80:356-362.
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