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Helping those with hair loss.

propecia and minoxidil

Using them to complement my hair transplant

In regrowing my hair I used propecia (also known as proscar or finasteride) and minoxidil (also known as rogaine) to complement my hair transplants. The drugs hold the line on my thinning, while my hair transplants restored the areas that already went bald. Call it a defensive/offensive plan to cure baldness.

Holding the (Hair) Line - From my research on and off the Internet, the consensus seemed to be that THE two most effective drug treatments for combating  were finasteride (also known as proscar or propecia) and minoxidil (also sold as rogaine). These two drugs are the only two currently approved by the FDA as "safe" drugs that have shown evidence of regrowing hair. That doesn't mean that the numerous other substances people use [insert long list of items] aren't effective, they're just not formally approved for use as hair loss treatments.

However, rogaine and propecia, used in combination, are considered by many experts (researchers, doctors, and thousands of hair regrowth junkies like me) to be the best drug treatment for baldness currently available. The two drugs have a synergistic and complementary effect on the thinning balding scalp.

Rogaine is applied topically to the scalp and works by increasing the blood flow to the scalp surrounding the thinning or balding areas. It has been found to be marginally effective in retaining or growing hair in the crown (top of the scalp in the back of the head). For some reason it does little if anything in restoring hair to the front hairline area.

For most men rogaine only regrows a thin coverage of thin hair, if even that. It's real strength may be in helping you retain your hair or slow the thinning process. I once quit using it because I came to think of it a "Nogain." But then I started shedding hair in the back of my head rapidly and got back on it again. That's the devils bargain you make with rogaine, if you ever stop using it you will lose what ever it may have given you.

Fortunately rogaine is now available without a prescription and can be purchased in generic formulas over the counter that are half the price of the Upjohn pharmaceutical companies name brand "Rogaine." I buy generic minoxidil (rogaine) at my local discount pharmacy and it runs me about $15.00 to $20.00 per month, depending on how generously I apply it.

Finasteride (sold by Merck as Proscar or Propecia) is the newest wonder drug. It may also be much more effective than rogaine based on the newest study results. Finasteride (propecia) is prescription drug taken orally in pill form. It works by inhibiting the conversion of the hormone testosterone into dyhytestosterone (DHT). Dyhytestosterone or DHT is thought to be an active ingredient in causing hair loss. DHT binds with DHT receptor sites in those hair follicles that are genetically susceptible to baldness (A receptor is an arrangement of molecules organized to accept or "bind to" only molecules with a complimentary shape - in this case DHT). DHT appears to cause follicles to enter their resting phase faster and shed. Gradually each successive growing/shedding cycle results in the production of finer and finer (less thick) hair being produced by the affected follicles, until the hair never breaks the surface of the skin. Once DHT binds to large numbers of receptors of the hair follicles on the scalp, the follicles are gradually shut down and eventually become dormant resulting in hair loss.

I've been taking Finasteride (propecia) along with minoxidil (rogaine) for the past year and a half. My hair loss has stopped and I've regrown a thin fine coverage of hair over my crown where I was previously bald. These drugs have had no noticeable positive affect on the front of my head. This may be because I started thinning years ago in the front first and those follicles are long since dead and buried. It is generally thought that once hair follicles are dormant for several years they are gone and can't be revived.

By far my most dramatic improvement in appearance is due to my hair transplants. With out the hair transplants I'd still be bald in front and fussing over the little peach fuss growing on the back of my head. However, by using the drugs to hold the line on my hair loss and grow a thin coverage, my hair transplants have had less ground to cover.

I also take hair vitamins with folic acid etc. in the superstitious chance that they will help as well. And of course I use a good shampoo rich in biotin, folic acid, panthenol, Retinol A etc.

Contact me (Pat)or The Shapiro Medical Group

To call the Shapiro Medical Group Directly

Call 1-800-843-1989 or 952-926-0000
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