Question: Hi I’m in my mid 20s and have begun to use minoxidil prophylactically as my dad is bald and 2 older brothers are balding. I have zero hair loss but would like to add propecia. The purpose for this is to prevent the need for a transplant, preferably indefinitely.Is that possible?
Answer: Hi, Sean. Preventing hair loss by using treatment before you develop any signs of male pattern baldness is a fairly unusual approach. It is also not recommended and potentially unnecessary; although genetic hair loss is hereditary, it does not necessarily affect every member of the family.
We receive many queries from men whose brothers and fathers have no hairloss but they have a receding hairline or thinning hair. Whilst it is likely that you are a carrier of the relevant genes for androgenetic alopecia, these have to be active for balding to actually occur – and sometimes they can remain dormant, hence how hair loss may appear to ‘skip’ a generation.
Whilst treating hair loss early on can be beneficial, we would not recommend you waste your time and money on preventing baldness before you know if you are actually affected. It is likely that you will be – but not certain.
What we would advise is to monitor your hair over time, looking for any excessive shedding, drop in the general thickness or receding. You can do this yourself or have a consultation at a hair loss clinic where specialists can keep photos on file for you for a specific period of time – then, if you start to develop signs of hair loss, that would be the time to seek help. This, rather than using treatment before a confirmed diagnosis, would be the optimum time to start a personalised programme designed to stabilise hair fall and promote regrowth. A specialist would be able to recommend a suitable hair loss treatment course tailored to your specific pattern of shedding and medical suitability.
At this point, the two MHRA licensed and FDA approved treatments for Male Pattern Baldness – finasteride 1mg and minoxidil – can be considered, as well as additional hair growth supporting products.
If you are not showing signs of hairloss yet, the likelihood of ‘needing’ a hair transplant is extremely low as surgical hair restoration is only generally recommended where there is a level of baldness that cannot be dealt with via non-surgical hair loss solutions due to the follicles being incapable of being stimulated into producing healthy hair. Reputable hair transplant surgeons also recommend men wait until they are at least 30 years of age before considering this option, too.
If you are particularly concerned that you may be losing your hair then a consultation where you can talk directly to a specialist may be useful, even just to put your mind at rest.
The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.