A mum of three from Lancashire has spoken out about her experience with a life-threatening tumour that had been overlooked because her symptoms – hormonal activity, hair loss and an end to her periods – suggested that she was going through the menopause.
Rachel Obasi from Blackburn told the Lancashire Evening Post that she started losing her hair five years ago when she was 43. “I started shedding hair and had an extremely dry flaky scalp,” she told the newspaper. “I did not know what was going on and thought it was stress-related.”
Thinning hair often caused by stress
It’s an easy conclusion to come to, as Telogen Effluvium – a generalised hair thinning that affects the whole scalp and is quite common among women – is indeed often caused by stress. It is also caused by any number of other things that cause the body to feel “threatened”, and the five-inch tumour that was quietly growing in Ms Obasi’s intestines could certainly have been just such a trigger.
Severe stomach pains several years after her hair started falling out eventually led to the hospital visit that would see Ms Obasi diagnosed with having a rare neuroendocrine tumour, a slow-growing cancer that was growing around the blood vessels which supplied her small intestine and colon.
Luckily, doctors were able to remove the tumour and save her life, but the surgery it required was painful and not without its complications. Today, however, Ms Obasi is making a good recovery and recently talked about her ordeal at a charity concert in Preston.
While Telogen Effluvium can be alarming – who, after all, wants to wake up and find they have thinning hair? – it does sometimes have a silver lining in that it is rather a visible announcement that the scalp is reacting badly to something that is going on in the body.
Excessive hair shedding can often signify an underlying health issue and should always be checked by a specialist who will take a person’s medical history and lifestyle changes into account when making their assessment. They can then recommend further medical supervision if needed.
Telogen Effluvium itself is treatable, as are most hair loss conditions once people seek out expert help. The hair should regrow naturally within around six months, however, many women like to try helping this process along with the help of a hair loss specialist.
Belgravia clients with Telogen Effluvium often experience significant results through using topical applications of recommended formulations of high strength minoxidil from the range of products available from our clinic pharmacies. Although this is only licensed for treatment of both Male Pattern Baldness and Female Pattern Hair Loss, there are many success stories where it has been used to effectively produced regrowth results as a treatment for Telogen Effluvium.
Whilst it can present on its own, Telogen Effluvium is often seen alongside genetic hair loss. It is known to exacerbate existing thinning or accelerate the onset of pattern hair loss in men and women with an inherited predisposition towards this condition. As such, if more than one hair loss condition is present simultaneously, it is wise to have a specialist recommend an effective, treatment plan tailored to your precise needs so that it can address both conditions at once.
The Belgravia Centre is the leader in hair loss treatment in the UK, with two clinics based in Central London. If you are worri
ed about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the UK or the rest of the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which are the largest collection of such success stories in the world and demonstrate the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time for our hair loss helpline or to arrange a free consultation.