Hair Disorders Clinic
Hair loss and thinning hair can be devastating to one’s self-image in our society. While hair loss can be a frustrating and confusing experience. Our caregivers understand this and treat each patient with dignity. At the UMass Memorial Hair Disorders Clinic, we do everything we can to diagnose and treat skin conditions that contribute to hair thinning or loss. And we also pride ourselves on thinking outside of medicines and procedures and also discuss cosmetic options to help even those with advanced and/or permanent loss to look and feel their best.
Conditions We Treat
- Androgenetic alopecia – age, familial, or hormonally related hair thinning or loss
- Alopecia areata – an autoimmune condition that leads commonly to circular bald patches
- Frontal fibrosing alopecia – loss of eyebrows and the frontal hairline, most frequently in women
- Lichen planopilaris – an inflammatory condition of the scalp that leads to hair loss
Frequently Asked Questions
Is my hair going to grow back?
Hair regrowth depends on the reason the hair is thinning or falling out. Some causes of hair loss result in scarring of the hair follicle. In those cases, the goal of treatment is to stop the process that is causing the scarring to preserve as much of the hair as we can. Once the scar is there, we can’t replace it with new hair follicles with the technology available today. However, many of the most common causes of hair loss don’t result in scarring, and we can be helpful in supporting regrowth.
Can you make my hair grow faster or longer?
The rate of hair growth is approximately 1 cm per month, and the length of hair that you can grow is genetically determined. We do not currently have treatments to cause hair to grow faster or longer.
Does minoxidil (Rogaine) work?
It depends on the reason for the hair loss. In cases of male-pattern and female-pattern alopecia, approximately two-thirds of patients experience some benefit from minoxidil. Minoxidil isn’t the correct treatment for all hair loss conditions. We can help you decide if trying minoxidil is the right treatment for you.
Does minoxidil (Rogaine) make my hair fall out?
It’s not unusual for patients just starting minoxidil to notice a slight uptick in hair shedding when they first start minoxidil. This is called exogen, and it is a normal, self-limited response of the body to the minoxidil. Patients typically continue treatment right through the slight shedding period, usually lasting just a few weeks. If minoxidil is helping your hair, you do have to keep using it to continue to enjoy the benefits.
Do you offer hair transplant or platelet-rich plasma (PRP) treatments?
Hair transplant and PRP are specialized hair loss treatments that we don’t currently offer at the UMass Memorial Hair Disorders Clinic. If appropriate, we’ll discuss the current science behind these treatments, and if they’re likely to be helpful for you. Referrals to regional centers that offer these treatments can be made. Hair transplant and PRP isn’t currently covered by insurance plans.