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.
Primary Medical ReviewerAdam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerE. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Current as ofMarch 12, 2014
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise