Prior to moving forward with hair transplantation, many male and female patients have already tried a variety of medical hair loss treatments.  A question they frequently ask is whether they should stop the medical hair loss treatments if they proceed with hair transplantation.  This blog answers that question and also discusses how those medical hair loss treatments may complement the surgical option.

Common male medical hair loss treatments include topical minoxidil (Rogaine™) and finasteride (Propecia™).  Common female hair loss options include oral spironolactone, topical (Rogaine™), and oral minoxidil.  An important fact that I share with my patients is that while hair transplantation can recreate a hair line or fill in an area of baldness, it does not stop the progression of hair loss.  That is an important concept given that performing a hair transplantation is just one step that occurs along a patient’s hair loss (and hair restoration) journey throughout their life.  As such, one needs to plan for all contingencies including the degree of further hair loss they can expect to experience based on their family history, age, and personal history of hair loss.

Medical hair loss treatments like oral finasteride for men can slow down further hair loss and can be complementary to performing a hair transplantation.  Conversely, some men want to avoid oral finasteride, and this is actually the reason they prefer the surgical option for hair restoration.  Hair transplantation can definitely be performed in patients who prefer not to use medical hair loss options.  However, it’s important for patients to understand that one can have further hair loss after hair transplantation.

Interestingly, the transplanted hairs originate from a part of the scalp (the back of the scalp) that is more resistant to further hair loss.  However, the non-transplanted hairs around those transplanted hairs may be more susceptible to further hair loss if one is not also on a medical hair loss therapy.  Given that Dr. Ratushny is a Harvard-trained, board-certified dermatologist and has expertise in medical hair loss and surgical hair transplantation, he can offer comprehensive medical advice to his patients about all of their medical and surgical options and how they can complement each other.