The pattern of AGA hair loss in women differs from male-pattern baldness. In women, the hair becomes thinner all over the head, and the hairline does not recede. AGA in women rarely leads to total baldness.
Androgenetic alopecia in men has been associated with several other medical conditions including coronary heart disease and enlargement of the prostate. Additionally, prostate cancer, disorders of insulin resistance (such as diabetes and obesity), and high blood pressure (hypertension) have been related to androgenetic alopecia. In women, this form of hair loss is associated with an increased risk of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). PCOS is characterized by a hormonal imbalance that can lead to irregular menstruation, acne, excess hair elsewhere on the body (hirsutism), and weight gain.
Rosemary oil vs minoxidil 2% for the treatment of AGA:
1. Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) is a medicinal plant with diverse activities including enhancement microcapillary perfusion.
2. This study aimed to investigate the clinical efficacy of topical application of rosemary oil in the treatment of AGA and compare its effects with minoxidil 2%.
3. Patients with AGA were randomly assigned to rosemary oil (Participants = 50) or minoxidil 2% (Participants = 50) for a period of 6 months.
4. After a baseline visit, patients returned to clinic for efficacy and safety evaluations every 3 months.
5. A standardized professional microphotographic assessment of each volunteer participants was taken at the initial interview and after 3 and 6 months of the trial.
6. No significant change was observed in the mean hair count at the 3-month endpoint, neither in the rosemary nor in the minoxidil group.
7. In contrast, both groups experienced a significant increase in hair count at the 6-month endpoint compared with the baseline and 3-month endpoint [P < .05 (statistically significant)].
8. No significant difference was found between the study groups regarding hair count either at month 3 or month 6 (> .05). It means that rosemary oil and minoxidil 2% are equally effective in preventing hair loss.
9. The frequencies of dry hair, greasy hair, and dandruff were not found to be significantly different from baseline at either month 3 or month 6 trial in the groups (P > .05).
10. The frequency of scalp itching at the 3- and 6-month trial points was significantly higher compared with baseline in both groups (P < .05). Scalp itching, however, was more frequent in the minoxidil group at both assessed endpoints (P < .05).
Conclusion: The findings of the present trial provided evidence with respect to the efficacy of rosemary oil in the treatment of AGA.
Dr. Jeff Zhao's practical suggestion: Make your own rosemary leaf paste instead of buying rosemary oil for topical application on your head!
Skinmed; 2015, 13(1): 15-21.
US National Library of Medicine
Rosemary photo by Acabashi, Christian Bauer and Itineranttrader