I’m a 33 year-old woman and I’ve recently been experiencing thinning all over my scalp. What tests should I have run to try to determine what’s causing the thinning and who would do this, my regular doctor, a dermatologist, a hair specialist?
Since generalized scalp hair thinning can represent not only Female Pattern Hair Loss, but also a myriad of other medical conditions, a number of tests are indicated:
- Hemoglobin, Hematocrit, Iron, and TIBC to rule out Anemia.
- DHEAS (Dihydroandrosteronesulfate) to rule out a Pituitary Adenoma.
- LH (Luteinizing Hormone), FSH (Follicle Stimulating Hormone), Estrogen, Testosterone, to rule out Polycystic Ovary Disease
In some cases we recommend a tissue biopsy to rule out a Telogen Effluvium (hair loss 2-3 months after some stressor such as medication, high fevers, emotional stress, or hospital stay).
Since hair loss in the female can be caused by so many factors, I recommend seeking a Dermatologist who can not only perform the necessary blood tests and biopsies, but can also rule out Alopecia Areata versus other dermatological alopecias such as those caused by bacteria and fungus.
The most important aspect of diagnosing hair loss in a female is a good, detailed history by the physician. Since hair loss can be very complex, seek a Dermatologist who specializes in hair loss diseases.
— Dr. Shelly Friedman, DO
Board Certified Hair Restoration Surgeon
Arizona’s Most Trusted Hair Loss Doctor
Named Phoenix Magazine’s Top Doc – Hair Transplant Surgeon