There are many causes of hair loss other than genetically inherited androgenic alopecia. Identifying the specific patter of hair loss can lead to reversible treatments that do not require hair transplant surgery. 

Alopecia Areata

Alopecia Areata (AA) is an auto immune disorder causing hair loss in every part of the body. Both men and women can experience AA.  This type of hair loss is characterized by discrete, localized areas of baldness.  Alopecia Areata is a self-limiting condition and can recover without any treatment. Steroid injections are sometimes necessary to treat the more resistant lesions.

Anagen Effluvium

Anagen Effluvium is typically associated with chemotherapy.  Hair loss can be dramatic even affecting every hair on the body.  Once the offending agent is removed the hair follicles can recover in many cases but full recovery can take years.

Traction Alopecia

Traction Alopecia results from hair extensions, eyelash extensions or anything that is always tugging on the hair. Very tight pony tails can also lead to traction alopecia.  When the hair shaft is continually stretched the subcutaneous follicle can die resulting in permanent loss of hair in the area.  Traction alopecia can require hair transplant and FUE hair restoration if the habit is not changed in time.


Trichotillomania is a psychological condition that can be associated with anxiety or illicit drug use.  The continuous involuntary pulling at their hair can cause permanent hair loss similar to traction alopecia.  The best treatment for trichotillomania is not hair transplant but to treat the underlying psychiatric condition.

Telogen Effluvium

Rapid hair loss caused by a stressful period in life is referred to as telogen effluvium.   Pregnancy and child bearing are common causes of TE.  Similar to anagen effluvium with the stress hormones return to normal levels the hair can recover without the need for medications or hair transplant surgery.

Shock Loss After Surgery

Brow lift and facelift incisions in the hairlines can cause shock loss of the surrounding hairs.  Traction and infllammation of the surrounding tissue cause hair follicles to shed their shafts resulting in areas of localized baldness. This condition is typically self-limited and resolves within 3 to 6 months.

Scarring (Cicatricial) Alopecia

Burn injuries, infections and skin conditions (scleroderma) can lead to Scarring Alopecia. Cicatricial Alopecia can result in the total loss of scalp and body hair following inflammatory conditions.

Medication Induced Hair Loss

Although many medications have hair loss as one of their side effects, medication induced hair loss is not a common cause of hair loss. Here is a list of the most important medications that may have hair loss as an adverse effect:

  • Chemotherapy Medications
  • Alloppurinol
  • Warfarin / Coumadin
  • Clofibrate
  • Gemfibrozil
  • Heparin

Additional San Diego Hair Transplant Information

PDFHair Transplant Before & After Surgery Instructions

Hair Transplant in San Diego From A Board Certified Facial Plastic Surgeon

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