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Rogaine Users - Regrowth and Shedding Cycles?

Discussion in 'Treatments for Androgenetic Alopecia' started by divinemiss, Jun 6, 2015.

  1. Georgina

    Georgina Established Member

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    I have exactly the same problem, but mine are 3-3.5 month cycles. Regrowth, then no regrowth plus recession of what I grew, then more regrowrh, more recession. It’s happened over and over for the last 3 and a half years that I’ve used it, and my hair has only gotten thinner and thinner. Also, it’s basically entirely lost its effectiveness now, and only seems to grow these pathetic weak hairs where once I was regrowing dark hairs. You know, it seems that only women have this issue with the cyclical shedding and growth from minoxidil. I spend most of my hair loss research amongst the male forums and none of them have ever had cyclical growth from minoxidil.
    It must be a female thing... perhaps hormone related.
    Regardless, it makes me feel a little better than I’m not the only one who has experienced this because I honestly thought I was just a freak.
     
  2. electra

    electra Established Member

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    Georgina, are you still on the Rogaine?

    I just started it, but wondering if it's worth it...I guess I won't know til I try.

    Does the 'dread shed' always result in hair regrowth? I'm willing to go through it if it does, but if it doesnt...Ooof. I don't know!
     
  3. Georgina

    Georgina Established Member

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    I am still using the oral version, and my dread sheds did yield growth for a couple of years. If something else had worked as well I would happily have ditched it because of the constant shedding, cyclical growth and side effects. However my hairloss is rapid, my entire hairline was almost behind my ears and my eyebrows and eyelashes was almost non existent. Never had a choice because nothing else ever worked.

    You can give it a go but just be aware that the topical version either may not work or cause some scary shedding,
     
  4. electra

    electra Established Member

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    You're on oral Minoxidil? I didn't know there was such a thing!

    So you think that although it still caused shedding/recession, it may have helped/is helping a bit? So sorry to hear of your struggles. It's so hard not knowing what works....
     
  5. Georgina

    Georgina Established Member

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    It regrew all of my hair for a while. Three years later it now doesn’t work.
     
  6. electra

    electra Established Member

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    Ah, ok. Got it. So sorry. :(

    I didn't know 'oral' minoxidil was a thing. Is it used in the U.S? Is it for more severe cases? Thanks.
     
  7. Georgina

    Georgina Established Member

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    Yes I think some derms in the US prescribe it, otherwise there are places online you can buy it.

    Yes, for more advanced loss.
    Mine is incredibly rapid and affects my entire body.
     
  8. electra

    electra Established Member

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    Ahh...Ok. So sorry, just looked at some earlier posts of yours.

    Do you have current pics you could post? And the docs think it was the early menopause you went through? I'm going through that change right now, and I know that's why i have the hair loss...But nobody knows what to do.

    And what are you trying now (if anything)? Thanks so much. Sorry, again, for what you've gone through.
     
  9. Georgina

    Georgina Established Member

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    Yea definitely low estrogen from menopause. For me, not hormone replacement or antiandrogen therapy has ever worked even vaguely. The only thing that ever worked was minoxidil and even that has limited effects. Post menopausal hairloss from what I have seen in my own experience and judging by things I’ve read from other women, is almost unstoppable.


    I took these photos about a week ago. My hair is going incredibly fast so it’s actually in a slightly worse state than these photos. I lose between 100-200 hairs each day and am growing none at all on my body. I’m headed for disaster.
     

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  10. electra

    electra Established Member

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    My first thought is that it doesn't look so bad! My second thought is...it looks like mine! And my third thought is, I understand how quick it is happening...when I look in the mirror, it looks different (worse) every day. More quickly than ever. Ugh. So sorry.

    You look really pretty!! :) I'm so sorry this is happening. I, too, am at a loss (no pun intended)....:(
     
    Georgina likes this.
  11. Georgina

    Georgina Established Member

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    Yeah fast is correct! I lose so much hair every day. Only last year my part line was quite tight and dense. Now it’s getting pretty obvious. I can’t wear my hair down. I need bobby pins, hair spray and clever styling just to put it up. It’s a nightmare. I’ve exhausted just about every option I have at the point.. which may even be an understatement. One thing I will say that seems to be speeding up my growth is evening primrose oil. It’s both a dht blocker but also rich is omega 6 fatty acids which are known to upregulate the production of vascular endothelial growth factor amongst other things. Still shedding buckets however.
     
  12. Jtilly

    Jtilly Established Member

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  13. Jtilly

    Jtilly Established Member

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    Hey Tina and Georgina,
    I have a question about menopause and peri menopause...
    How do you know if you are in menopause or peri menopause?
    Reason I ask is because I had a doctor test just my FSH level and it came back at 41. He immediately said I was in early menopause and gave me Estradiol without testing any other hormones.
    I’ve since had my hormones tested a bazillion times.
    Have been off hormones since early July.
    In September even had my GP doctor test my FSH, Estradiol and Progesterone every Friday for 4 weeks. Have had FSH tested 7 times total since September. FSH generally stays between 3 and 6, with the exception of twice out of 7 times, once was a 12, once was 21.
    The other hormones fluctuate as well, but on average my estradiol is 87’ish... But a couple times went low at 23. Progesterone fluctuates between 0.5 to 8.5..
    I had read early on if you are 40 and your FSH comes back high, Doctor should retest as it could be a fluke.
    I guess I’m just curious, how do I truly know? I don’t have my uterus anymore, so can’t tell by period, but have ovaries.
    I don’t have menopause symptoms, I don’t think?
    Do you girls have your hormones tested?
    My androgen levels are all super low.
    Just had IGF-1 tested (human growth factor?) and it came back high, out of range high. Range is 58-258. I tested at 294.
    So confused what is happening to me...

    Thanks for any insight you might have.
    ~Ps. I know I discussed the IGF-1 with you Georgina and you mentioned seeing a specialist.
    I have already seen an endocrinologist who checked my cortisol, TSH and said I was fine.
    I went a step further and had my GI doctor test T3, T4.. I’ve had some other thyroid tests ran too that can tell if I might have a future thyroid problem? All comes back normal.
    I don’t even know who to turn to anymore...
     
  14. Georgina

    Georgina Established Member

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    Tested for both, not either. Most likely associated with menopausal level estrogen.
     
  15. Georgina

    Georgina Established Member

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    Well I simply didn’t have a period for years so that was the first thing. Secondly, my estrogen was so low that on paper I am hormonally 80 years old. I also got MRIs done and uterus scans which showed low follicle count and hypogonadism. My HPA axis is all kinds of messed up. I’m a weird case, but all those diagnostic tools should apply to any woman going through menopause.
     
  16. electra

    electra Established Member

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    Geogina, I did wonder about Evening Primrose Oil. I'd stopped it due to not knowing, but now I will continue taking it....

    I also wonder about my cortisol (though I am taking adrenal supplements); my anxiety has been through roof, my insomnia has ramped up, and my hair loss has ramped up...
     
  17. Jtilly

    Jtilly Established Member

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    So sorry to hear you’ve been through all that at such a young age!
    What is considered low estrogen on paper? Because that’s all I have to go based on, is paper, unfortunately...
    I am familiar with FSH (follicle stimulating hormone) blood test, but not familiar with MRI’s performed to show low follicle count and have never heard of hypogonadism or HPA Axis...
    My estradiol has gone down to the 20’s a few times but averages around high 80’s.. 87, 89... Highest I’ve seen it was at 171.
     
  18. Georgina

    Georgina Established Member

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    Cortisol when too elevated can hinder normal growth factor and sex hormone production. It’s what caused my hormones to crash.
     
  19. Georgina

    Georgina Established Member

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    Different labs have different values, but essentially during the lowest period of your cycle, your estrogen should be no lower than 70pmol/L. Mine was 43. That’s menopause.
    Uterus scans check for any abnormalities in your anatomy, and also how many eggs you have. I have only like 4. Also I have tubal scarring as I contracted a disease (treated and gone now) from being assaulted as teen.
    MRI scans look at whether or not your pituitary gland is working, if there are any tumours creating issues, causing insufficient hormone output etc.
    the hPa axis is the Hypothalamic - pituitary - adrenal axis, and its a big negative feedback loop that begins with the production of glucocorticoids or cortisol. If this is too elevated or deficient, things will go haywire from there.

    Gosh our hormones are a damn mystery aren’t they! Especially menopause.
    It seems that there is much more at play that just sex hormones, because if that was the primary issue, we’d all be fixed by taking estrogen, like men with Androgenetic Alopecia (I have seen men on estrogen regrow all of their hair... all of it).
    I’m at al loss myself. Our best hope at this point is hair cloning or hair regeneration like the Tsuji-Riken model, but it seems very far away. What do we have until then? Replicel MAYBE, potentially Histogen, Aclaris JAK inhibitors (if it ends up working), Follicum which doesn’t seem overly effective, Trinov which in my opinion is WAY overhyped, Samumed which has already shown mediocre results.. and all of these are years away with the exception of Trinov, and likely incredibly expensive if and when they are available (Tsuji apparently will cost around $130K).

    I have gone so far into science with this, and I understand a lot, but I still find the answers elude me. There is a fundamental difference between female and male Androgenetic Alopecia, this much I know. Then there is some other fundamental difference where menopausal Androgenetic Alopecia is concerned. It’s not all as simple as low estrogen and high androgens. There is something else but no one has looked deeply enough into it. Part of me wonders if it’s a growth hormone thing, or a oxidative stress thing. Is it the decrease in cell proliferation and growth factors with aging, which is caused by low sex hormones and growth hormone? I don’t know.
    What we know is that HRT isn’t the answer.
    I am yet to try Hgh, but my order should be arriving today.
    I guess I’ll see how that goes and report back.
     
  20. Jtilly

    Jtilly Established Member

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    Holy cow! That is a lot of complex information I’ve never heard of!!
    Again, I am so sorry to hear all you’ve been through!
    Well I guess on paper, the few times my estradiol tested in the 20’s, that must be really bad then..
    Even at 87, 89 that must be too low then too?
    Doctors have told me I should be over 100 and that I’m way too young to have low estradiol, hence why they put me on estradiol pill then patch and now want me on birth control Yaz.
    Birth control and Rogaine.. Haven’t tried either yet because I have a bad feeling about both...
    As I’ve mentioned previously, I’m on Spironolactone but on such a low dose at 25mg so it’s not helping with hair anyways, so.... I think I’m quitting it tonight.
    I’m actually worried it might have been making things worse.. acne and possibly hair shedding worse from it.
    I’m TERRIFIED quitting is going to make the shedding increase from 200 to 300 hairs a day to 400 plus hairs!!
    I am so confused because this has all happened in the matter of 8 months time. And actually the substantial hair loss in 5 months time. 8 months ago is just when I noticed something was different, but I wasn’t losing gobs of hair then. Early July is when shedding increased. And every time I think it can’t get worse, it actually does!
    I legit seriously feel like I had chemo or something!!
    Today I lost 181 hairs in the shower alone! (Yes I counted)
    I don’t think any hair loss is good loss, don’t get me wrong, but this fast??
    I’m completely beside myself.
    And obviously Spironolactone is not helping. And I am definitely not inclined to increase the dose when my androgens are so low as it is.
    Big sigh... and many tears today...
    Hugs to you! I know you’re having a tough time too!!
    Thank you for all the information you share!
     

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