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Hair Loss/Telegon Effluvuim in 13 year old girl

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Question
My 13 year old daughter as been diagnosed with Telegon Effluvuim after suffering from thinning hair on top of scalp for 10 months. Blood tests have all shown normal results. Her hair loss is so bad now that scalp is visible in several places on top of head.She has got new hair growing but as one area recovers another area starts to shed. After an appointment with a  dermatologist she has been advised to start using 2% Minoxidil once a day to speed up the regrowth on the thinning areas. My questions are :- Is is safe for a 13 year old to use Minoxidil as the pack states over 18?one of the side effects listed is increased hair loss in the first few weeks, does this just apply to people with T.E ? as she has got regrowth coming through we do not want to risk this hair falling out. Also the pack states if you stop using Minoxidil all the new hair grown will fall out again does this apply if using for treatment of T.E. My daughter is reluctant to start using Minoxidil as she is worried that it will make the hair loss worse, at the moment we are managing to disguise the thinning. Should we just wait for the hair to recover by itself or start the Minoxidil?? Any advice you can give us?????? It is heart-breaking to see her going through this at such a young age.

Answer
The hair loss will not worsen with the use of 2% minoxidil and the warning regarding age is only there because that was the age cut off used in the study for the FDA.  There is no added risk for a 13 y.o. to use the lotion as your dermatologist recommended. Seeing hair thin in one area and then another would make most dermatologists think of either a diffuse Alopecia Areata with no shiny bald spots which is very rare or Trichotillomania - This condition can result in what you have described. The spots which are thinned out leave either a diffuse thin area, more frequently hairs about an inch long as it breaks where the hair is twisted around the index finger- This is a relatively common condition. A biopsy of the scalp would confirm the diagnosis of one or the other if there is some confusion.

http://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/picture-of-trichotillomania

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Peter J. Panagotacos, <B>M.D.</B>

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I have 30 years experience in the field of medical and surgical Hair Restoration and am Board Certified in Dermatology and Hair Restoration Surgery.

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I have 30 years experience in the field of medical and surgical Hair Restoration and am Board Certified in Dermatology and Hair Restoration Surgery. More information can be found at my website www.hairdoc.com

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