At The Griffin Center of Hair Restoration and Research, we believe that every case of hair loss requires its own diagnosis. This means that we work with each and every patient who comes through the door to determine the underlying cause of their hair loss rather than merely providing a “one-size-fits-all” treatment. Even though more than 90% of all hair loss cases are the result of common genetic pattern baldness, or androgenetic alopecia, Dr. Edmond Griffin and Dr. Ashley Curtis understand that no two patients are ever exactly alike and that every patient has a number of individual factors that make their particular case unique. Only after arriving at a thorough and comprehensive diagnosis can our hair loss experts design a customized hair restoration plan incorporating the specific combination of treatments that will yield optimal results. Diagnosing hair loss is not always easy, and can sometimes require a complex, multi-tiered approach.
Hair loss can potentially be the result of a variety of different causes, ranging from short-term hormonal fluctuations to genetic predisposition to serious auto-immune conditions, so understanding the patient’s full health history is vital to understanding why the hair loss is occurring. Not only will we ask about the specific characteristics of your hair loss and how long it has been happening, but we will also delve into whether you have a family history of hair loss, your personal hairstyling habits, your diet, and any recent illnesses or medications that you might be taking. Once we understand which of the various causes of hair loss apply, we can address the underlying condition rather than simply treating the symptom.
Step Two: Physical Examination
Many forms of hair loss progress in highly specific ways, so it is often possible to determine which form of hair loss is involved by closely examining the scalp. While genetic pattern baldness advances in a predictable and symmetrical pattern in men, and a somewhat more diffuse pattern in women, lesser known conditions like alopecia areata tend to cause patchy and asymmetrical hair loss, and while the areas affected by alopecia areata are smooth, those affected by forms of scarring alopecia are often scaly, red, and inflamed. Over forty years of experience treating hair loss frequently allows our experts to notice things that other doctors might miss.
Step Three: Diagnostic Testing
We also routinely perform several diagnostic medical tests to help determine the underlying causes of your hair loss. This usually starts with a simple pull test to determine the stage of the shedding process and may also include a detailed blood test to ascertain, for example, whether your hair loss is caused by hormonal changes. A scalp biopsy may also be performed and light microscopy can be used to examine the individual hairs to reveal possible disorders of the hair shaft. Our attention to detail at every stage of the process is what makes the difference at The Griffin Center.
If you are concerned about your own hair loss, or are interested in learning more about the many hair restoration options that are available, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ to get the latest news or answers to your questions about hair restoration and research or contact The Griffin Center of Hair Restoration so that we can schedule an appointment for a full hair loss consultation.