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Recovery from TE: is this normal?

Discussion in 'Women's General Hair Loss Discussions' started by HopefulMama, Jun 28, 2011.

  1. HopefulMama

    HopefulMama Member

    Jan 5, 2011
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    #1 HopefulMama, Jun 28, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2018
  2. Krisann79

    Krisann79 Guest

    I have Graves (thyroid issues) and I'm shedding about 200 right now. I just dropped my dose and I imagine I've fallen hypo. I'll find out Tuesday. Is it possible you need a new dose of med?
  3. Chickadee

    Chickadee Guest

    Yes, 50-75 could easily be your "normal" shed. (During TE recovery, my hair did the same thing.)
  4. Chickadee

    Chickadee Guest

    Hi again, HopefulMama
    My shed went suddenly low (following my dread shed), and then it went through a couple of cycles of higher and lower until it finally stabilized. Although I freaked out every time my shed went higher again, the high sheds were never nearly as high as the first one. It actually took a couple of years before my hair was cycling normally, but it also took that long for me to fully address the various hormonal contributors to my hair loss.

    I found that counting hairs is very, very difficult -- especially when you're trying to distinguish between a day in which you lose 40-50 hairs and one in which you lose 70-80 hairs, say. You may be shedding a ittle more during certain periods of time, but your regrowth may be unknowingly higher during those periods also. Besides, you're not going to be able to count every hair that falls off your head.

    It makes sense to count in the short run if you're losing hairs in the hundreds or thousands (as in a severe acute TE). This can at least help determine that something other than (or addition to) Androgenetic Alopecia is going on.

    But during the recovery stage, you need to remind yourself that by all accounts, 50-75 is within the normal range. (This is probably what I shed now, on average. I've actually wondered about the women on this site who say they shed only 10 hairs in a day -- but for some reason, this low of a shed seems to correspond only with those who have Androgenetic Alopecia loss.) If your previous normal was 40-50, say, and you're now shedding 50-75, then the difference is actually slight when it comes to hair cycles. At this stage, regrowth is a more important indicator I think.

    For me, another good gauge (in retrospect -- because I was an obsessive counter at one time) was how EASILY the hair fell from my head. I now realize that when I combed my hair, and 20 hairs falls into the sink almost simultaneously, it meant that my shed was not yet normal. But if it took some vigorous brushing to detach the same 20 hairs, then I was okay. So, your question re: running my hands through my hair is a good one, I think.

    Earlier in my recovery, there was a time when I could run my hands through my hair and a few hairs would always come out. (But please realize that my hair still improved somewhat during this stage.) This rarely happens anymore. Of course, whenever I brush my hair -- even during the middle of the day -- I'll dislodge a few hairs.
  5. HopeH

    HopeH Guest

    Hi Chickadee. I have to say that I found your last post extremely informative and comforting. It is difficult to count the strands that fall on a daily basis and 50-75 per day is indeed considered normal.

    May I ask your diagnosis and what you have done to recover? Besides monitoring how easily you lost strands (either with brushing or running your fingers through your hair), how else did you determine if you were on the mend?

    I ask because I'm trying to figure out where I stand at the moment. I am in "early stages Androgenetic Alopecia" and was diagnosed with "mild, atypical PCOS". I don't have any scalp showing but I've lost 40% to 50% of my density while on BC. I've been off since December 2010 and I was diagnosed Jan 2011. I started 100MG on Aldactone (Spironolactone) in May and I'm 3 days shy of the 2 month mark.

    I counted strands all of April and found that I average 36 strands per day (range was 12 - 80, not including shower). Detangling my hair after a shower would easily dislodge 50 to 80 strands.

    I've had slight regrowth since April. I can't attribute it to the Aldactone because I noticed the regrowth before starting. I took photos in April and again in June and I do not see a difference in my part or elsewhere. I've counted strands periodically since April and have found that I'm still losing about 40 per day. Detangling after a shower increased when I was taking iron supplements but I've since discontinued. Post shower detangling seems to be decreasing but I haven't kept track enough to determine this conclusively.

    I'm planning on giving the Aldactone a full 3 months and then starting a 1-month shed, shower and detangle count for comparison to April. Would you recommend anything else to track how I'm progressing? Running my fingers through my hair to see how easily hairs are dislodged isn't practical because I have wavy hair styled with hair products. Touching or adjusting my hair right now nearly always means losing a couple of stands. I haven't noticed any more regrowth since the initial growth in May. Sometimes I even think it's worse. :(

    Besides the Aldactone, I take a prenatal vitamin, 1000MG of EPO, biotin. I wash occasionally with Nizoral and T-Gel. BC is not an option for me. I'm 32, btw.
  6. Vlal

    Vlal Guest

    I don't know what my normal is because before I had hair loss (that I knew about) I never thought about how much hair came out. However, what I go by now is how much hair I shed in the shower. As I wash my hair daily, I can tell if it's a lot, medium or low. When I go into a short remission period, the shed literally becomes almost zilch. I do believe this is my normal as I think if I had been a reasonable daily shedder prior to hair loss I would have remembered a I had very long hair and dealing with any shower shedding would have been irritating. I do remember that I shed some hair in the day, but not massive amounts.

    I have found I tend to be either pretty much shedding or not shedding with not so much an in-between stage. Hope that makes sense...
  7. Vlal

    Vlal Guest

    Unfortunately not. It is worse now than when I shaved it off. I shaved because I couldn't emotionally deal with it and getting rid of the shedding was something that liberated me and gave me an emotional/mental break. Once shaved, I no longer felt the attachment I used to feel to my bio hair - it helped me to rationalise my situation. Now I accept it, I don't feel the need to do that right now.
  8. Krisann79

    Krisann79 Guest

    I'm on Levothyroxine (generic). I'm interested to see what my bloodwork will show tomorrow. I'm praying he'll just say hypo and then my hair will magically grow back after being on the higher dose again Lol!
  9. Krisann79

    Krisann79 Guest

    Sorry it took me so long to respond. I was on Levothyroxine 50 mcgs. I thought I was hypo because my hair was falling out but just like you said with yourself.....I am actually hyper. I just assumed I was hypo but I had no other symptoms. I guess I should have known better. My TSH was <.01 along with being high or over on my T3 & T4. My Endo pulled me off the Levothyroxine all together. I'm praying that my levels drop and my hair loss stops. This is awful! I wear makeup on my head now because you can see through my hair! I've been avoiding it but I think I'm going to have to go look for wigs soon. :( And I live in FL so this is going to suck! My scalp hurts too :thumbdown2:

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