Androgenetic alopecia is a type of hair loss that is inherited from
either or both the mother and the father. Also known as male- or female-pattern
hair loss, it is the most common cause of hair loss.
The condition occurs when the growth (anagen) phase of the hair
growth cycle becomes shorter and shorter. A genetic sensitivity to androgens, a
type of hormone, causes hair follicles-where hair growth begins-to sprout hairs
that are thinner than normal. The hairs become thinner and thinner, and
eventually the follicles die away.
In men, hair loss occurs on the front hairline
and forehead and on the top of the head. Bald spots are noticeable.
In women, hair loss occurs as thinning of hair on the top of the head. Women tend to keep their front hairline and do not generally develop bald
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine