Information and Solutions for Men and Women

What Causes Female Pattern Hair Loss?

Female patterned hair loss can be caused by medical conditions.

Female pattern hair loss (FPHL) is also called female androgenetic alopecia (female AGA or FAGA). Three of the most common causes of FPHL appear to be age, heredity, and hormonal changes. However, causes are not as defined as in common male balding. Research suggests that chronic low-level inflammation in hair follicles and marginal iron deficiency may also contribute to FPHL203088

At least one study indicates that thyroid conditions are strongly associated with female pattern hair loss—more than any other type of alopecia. Some health conditions or procedures may cause excess androgens and female AGA. These include: 30

Environmental toxins may also play a role in FPHL. A study of hair follicles in women with this type of hair loss found excess aryl hydrocarbon receptors. These types of receptors can be activated by toxins and cause inflammation and cell death. 379

Research indicates that women with androgenetic hair loss can also experience telogen effluvium due to seasonal hair cycle changes. A six year study involving over 800 healthy women with thinning hair (79.2% of whom had female pattern hair loss) showed that the amount of hair entering the telogen phase is in July, with most shedding occurring during the autumn months. 78

Disclaimer: This website is not intended to replace professional consultation, diagnosis, or treatment by a licensed physician. If you require any medical related advice, contact your physician promptly. Information presented on this website is exclusively of a general reference nature. Do not disregard medical advice or delay treatment as a result of accessing information at this site.
An hereditary disorder characterized by defective cortisol production and an accumulation and higher level of adrenal androgens. 32
Caused by excess adrenal hormones; symptoms include oily skin, body and facial acne, male pattern hair loss, and irregular menstrual periods. 30
Characterized by oily skin (seborrhea), acne, hirsutism (excess hair), and alopecia (hair loss); if the adrenal gland is involved symptoms can include inflammatory skin condition seborrhea dermatitis and menstrual irregularities. 30