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.
Current as of: October 13, 2016
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
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