What are the treatment options and likelihood of success for androgenetic alopecia in women?

I have been diagnosed with androgentic alopecia. I am a woman in my mid 40s. I have heard of Minoxidil, the laser comb, PRP. Are there other recommended treatments? What are the average success rates for each treatment option? Thank you!

Doctor Answers 8

What are the options for androgenetic alopecia in women?

By far, hands down, minoxidil and hormone blockers have the best evidence for medical treatments. Only minoxidil is formally FDA approved for hair loss in women. 

Minoxidil helps 30 % of women. Overall, about 15 % of women get outstanding results.  Side effects of minoxidil include headaches, dizziness, heart palpitations, hair growth on the face, and shedding in the first 8 weeks. It must never be used during pregnancy. 

Spironolactone stops hair loss in 40 % of women. 40 % get an improvement. It must never be used by women who are pregnant or trying to become pregnant. Side effects include dizziness, decreased mood (depression), decreased libido, breast enlargement, breast tenderness. Shedding can occur in the first month or two.  Other hormone blockers can be used but only under specialist care of a hair specialist. These include finasteride, dutasteride, flutamide, cyproterone actetate. These must never be used during pregnancy and some are strictly  reserved for post menopausal women. Each has their own unique potential side effects profile. 

PRP has some benefit in 25 % of women. It can cause shedding, swelling in the forehead. Some women can worsen. 

Low level laser therapy (LLLT) helps 15 % to 20% of women to a significant degree. It is safe, but can cause shedding in some in the first few weeks. 

The role of rosemary oil, other essential oils (lavender, thyme, rosemary), ketoconaozle, zinc pyrithione,  pumpkin seed oil, microneedling, biotin, hair and nail supplements, commercial supplements is less clear but may have a role.

Hair transplants have a high chance of success in the properly selected patient. Overall, it's much more challenging than in men. Many women are not candidates for a  hair transplant because there thinning is diffuse (meaning all over)



Treatment options

First a diagnosis will determine course of treatment.   Female pattern hair loss is different than androgenetic hair loss in women.  With the latter, a transplant is possible for restoration. 

Minoxidil use at 7% daily will yield 10-15% improvement. 

PRP is variable based on the PRP kit that is used and the expertise of the clinic.  Works great on miniaturizing hairs. 

Transplant should have a yield rate of at least 90%, this is clinic and surgeon dependent. 

Laser comb is a marketing gimmick and can do more harm than good, stay away.

Stem cell therapy also an option, 

Good luck.

Baubac Hayatdavoudi, MD
Beverly Hills Physician
5.0 out of 5 stars 41 reviews

Initial Treatment Options in Women

PRP by itself is a break through and is, by far, the most successful approach. The sooner you start, the better the results. I recommend supplementing PRP with other treatments that are generally less successful separately but may be helpful as part of a total regimen: Vivisical supplements, home micro-needle roller, Formula 82M (minoxidil with other agents), low level laser light therapy (Laser Cap Pro), and Tricomin shampoo and conditioner.  

PRP is not a cure. Maintenance is required every 6-12 months. 

Jay Goldstein, MD
Freehold Physician

Unfortunately there aren't many treatment options for women with hair loss. In general PRP or laser comb do not have strong sci

Unfortunately there aren't many treatment options for women with hair loss.  In general PRP or laser comb do not have strong scientific data for treating hair loss.  It may not be harmful but it will cost you a lot of money if you want to try.

Jae Pak, MD
Los Angeles Hair Restoration Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 85 reviews

What are the treatment options and likelihood of success for androgenetic alopecia in women?

Thanks for your query. You can achieve a good success rate in the treatment options. Minoxidil, PRP, laser combs all have good outcomes and a better result if taken in a combination. PRP combined with mesotherapy along with regular use of minoxidil gives a very good result. You should also visit an endocrinologist for the same, to rule out any hormonal imbalances in the body. Hope it helps.


All The Best

Ajaya Kashyap, MD
India Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 132 reviews

Alopecia in women

ıf you have a bald spot you may have hair restoration surgery .Unfortunatelly there are 2 problem about hair transplantation for ladies:  First, the donor area that we obtain all hair follicles may be under affect of genetical hair loss ( you may have a diffuse hair thinning pattern) and because of that, after restoration procedure transplanted hairs would be also thin and not enough for restoring preexisting hair. These thin hair stock may not satisfied woman patient after surgery and not providing life long guaranty; so we would not able to get results as successfull as in men..Secondly, let’s assume that we found before operation that  woman has a strong donor site on her back and sides of head, we have to shave all hair short to harvest hair follicles just before operation. So it is really a socially terrible condition for a woman to having almost no hair and it causes daily life restrictions. Only after 10 days of operation, patient can use a hair prosthesis to cover the area … Or in some cases let’s say, the patient needs a limited hair transplant  (1000-1500 grafts) we can harvest hair from a partially shaved area on donorsite that long unshaven hair able to cover the shaved area .

Ilhan Serdaroglu, MD
Turkey Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Understanding Hair loss and treatment options: prp and progesterone

There are great treatment options to help slow down the process or reverse it such as PRP, progesterone, viviscal as well as finesteride and rogaine. I recommend a formal consultation with a hair loss expert to go over your condition and best treatment options. Best, Dr. Emer.

Jason Emer, MD
Los Angeles Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 167 reviews

Women with hair loss

I have written extensively on this subject,, see below. If you have just thinning hair, then scalp micropigmentation works very well for this on a cosmetic level

William Rassman, MD
Los Angeles Hair Restoration Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.