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Latest FDA-approved treatment that appears to significantly boost hair growth

Latest FDA-approved treatment that appears to significantly boost hair growth

It would be smart for us to become familiar with the notion of hair loss as well as some of the factors that contribute to it. This is before going on to the latest FDA-approved treatment that appears to significantly boost hair growth.

Highlights:

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  • An Overview of Hair Loss
  • Factors that contribute to hair loss
  • Latest FDA-approved treatment that appears to significantly boost hair growth
  • Study proving its efficacy

Alopecia, which is simply the medical term for hair loss, is rather prevalent. Even though it happens more often to people in their middle years and older, it can happen to anyone, even young children.

A normal amount of daily hair loss is between 50 and 100 strands of hair. This is according to the American Academy of Dermatology. When there are around 100,000 hairs on your head, a loss of a few won’t be noticed. The loss of hair is typically followed by the growth of new hair, but this is not always the case.

Loss of hair can come on suddenly or progress gradually over a period of years. Its length, whether it lasts for a short time or a long time, is directly related to what caused it.

Loss of hair happens when something prevents new hair from sprouting in its follicles. This disorder is referred to as anagen effluvium in the medical field. Hereditary hair loss, immune system overreactions, certain medications and treatments. Also, hairstyles that tug on the hair, harsh hair-care products, compulsions to pull out one’s hair, and other factors. These are among the most prevalent reasons for hair loss.

Latest FDA-approved treatment that appears to significantly boost hair growth

If you are experiencing hair loss, new hair won’t develop unless the underlying problem is addressed. For instance, patients undergoing cancer treatment with chemotherapy or radiation frequently have significant hair loss. When they stop receiving the therapy, their hair often begins to grow back.

Talk to your medical professional if you have any reason to believe that therapy or medication is the root cause of your hair loss. When you suddenly stop taking therapy or medication, you run the risk of experiencing serious adverse effects.

Treatment may be necessary for other factors that contribute to hair loss. The majority of people who suffer from genetic hair loss experience ongoing hair loss after receiving therapy. If a woman inherits the genes for hereditary hair loss, she may have a progressive loss of hair. This may be over her lifetime.

Genetic hair loss in men often manifests as a receding hairline or bald patch. This begins in the middle of the scalp. Women seldom experience hereditary hair loss.

Treatment is helpful for a large number of people who suffer from hair loss. However, it is not effective for everyone. Your dermatologist will be able to tell you what to expect.

The first systemic medication for alopecia areata was given the go-ahead by the FDA in the United States today. This is excellent news.

Alopecia areata is a form of hair loss that is caused by an autoimmune ailment called alopecia areata. This condition causes the body to attack hair follicles. Olumiant is effective because it blocks some of the erroneous messages that are sent throughout the body. Because of the approval, people with alopecia, who don’t have a lot of good treatment options, now have another one.

Clinical trials of the FDA approved drug

Even though Olumiant has been approved to treat a number of illnesses, like rheumatoid arthritis, since 2018, treating alopecia was considered an “off-label” use.

“Access to safe and effective treatment options is crucial for the significant number of Americans affected by severe alopecia.” Dr. Kendall Marcus, director of the Division of Dermatology and Dentistry in the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, said in a press release. “It is important for the many Americans who have severe alopecia to have access to safe and effective treatments.”

“Patients suffering from severe alopecia areata have a large unmet need, and today’s approval will assist in satisfying that need.”

In clinical trials, approximately one-third of patients were able to regrow enough hair to cover 80 percent of their scalp. In order to conduct research on the medication, which is made by Eli Lilly and Company, the researchers enlisted the help of 855 people. These people had experienced the loss of at least half of their scalp hair.

Some of the participants in the two clinical trials were given two milligrams of Olumiant. Some were given four milligrams of Olumiant, and some of the participants were given a placebo.

They didn’t know which pill they were taking. Also, the researchers conducting the study didn’t either. Hence, the design of the experiment was very thorough.

After a period of 36 weeks, the researchers discovered that almost one third of patients who were given the greater dose had had sufficient regrowth to cover at least 80 percent of their scalps with new hair. Only 17–22% of those who took the lower dose experienced the aforementioned side effect, whereas 3–5% of those who took the placebo did.

Side effects

The most common side effects were infections of the respiratory tract, headaches, acne, higher cholesterol levels, feeling tired, sick, and gaining weight.

A professor in North Carolina named Margaret M. Quinlan, who has alopecia, told Insider that it is positive that additional therapies are becoming authorized for alopecia, but that using Olumiant would be “a last resort” for her. Margaret M. Quinlan suffers from alopecia.

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She said, “One of my concerns is that people will see this as the solution for everybody, and there are a lot of people that won’t qualify for it, or aren’t willing to handle the side effects, like suppressing their immune systems during a pandemic.” “One of my concerns is that people will see this as the solution for everybody.”

Also unsettling to Quinlan is the notion that your hair loss will resume to its previous state if you ever stop taking the medication. She would rather treat her condition with complementary and alternative medicine, like taking vitamins and following a strict autoimmune diet.

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Treatments for alopecia are insufficient.

Although alopecia is not harmful to a patient’s physical health, it can have a significant impact on their emotional well-being.

Research shows that women with this illness are more likely to get depressive or anxious disorders, have a lower quality of life, feel bad about their bodies, and have “significant disruptions” in their social lives, like missing work or school.

A little girl of 12 years old took her own life earlier this year after being tormented about the fact that she was bald.

However, there is neither a cure nor an optimal solution to the problem.

Steroids are a common treatment, but they are ineffective in most situations and come with a host of side effects. Steroids can be administered in the form of a cream, shot, or pill.

Chemicals can be used to cause a severe allergic reaction on the scalp, which has the paradoxical effect of preventing the immune system from attacking hair follicles in approximately 40% of cases.

This is yet another treatment option. According to the National Alopecia Areata Foundation, the treatment must be done on a regular basis and is not commonly available.

Many women believe that the best answer is to wear a wig, despite the fact that doing so can be expensive and uncomfortable at times.

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Olumiant suppresses the body’s inappropriate immune response

Olumiant, also known by its generic name baricitinib, is a member of a class of medications known as JAK inhibitors.

They have been used for a long time to treat autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, where they are given to stop the immune system from reacting in the wrong way.

Other JAK inhibitors other than Olumiant, such as Xeljanz (tofacitinib), are currently being examined and have not yet been authorized by the FDA for the treatment of alopecia. However, these medications appear to be useful for certain alopecia patients.

According to Quinlan, people are spending “hundreds and hundreds of dollars” on JAK inhibitors, and they frequently purchase these medications overseas, a process that she referred to as “a little sketchy.”

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The approval of Olumiant, for one thing, will make it easier for people to have their therapy covered by insurance.

Because JAK inhibitors are linked to an “increased risk of major heart-related events, cancer, blood clots, and death,” the FDA started putting warning labels on them just one year ago. People who smoke and those who have preexisting cardiac issues are at the greatest danger.

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According to Maryanne Senna, a dermatologist and hair loss expert, many patients believe that the benefits of alopecia treatments exceed the dangers. This is something she previously stated to Andrea Michelson of Insider.

“I see the smiles reappear on the faces of my patients and study subjects as their hair begins to regenerate as a result of these therapies,” she explained. “They tell me that they feel like they have their life back, that they feel like themselves again.”

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