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  • Writer's pictureChelsea Allport

Diagnosing Hair Loss

There are many possible causes of hair loss. The best way to fix it will depend on figuring out exactly why you are losing hair. An effective solution is all about getting to the root of the problem, and our hair loss specialists can help diagnose that problem. For example, if you suffer from Alopecia Universalis, then laser growth treatments are not going to work and we are better off going straight to other methods. However, if you are showing baldness symptoms because of a skin condition, then we might be able to fix it with topical creams to help it grow back normally.

We have the most advanced hair loss specialist equipment at all of our clinics in Wollongong, in addition to professionals with decades of experience and everything we need to accurately diagnose and fix issues. We do a number of tests to get a clear idea of all the factors in play, and then put it all together in order to identify the problem.

Some of the tests we do include:

Pull tests: This is exactly as low-tech as it sounds, and you can even do it at home. It involves gently tugging on a group of a few dozen strands and counting how many come out. Generally, a few should be in the final telogen phase and will come out easily. If a disproportionate amount comes loose, then it is a decent indicator of clinical hair loss.

Hair counts: This is also exactly what it sounds like. If someone still has a lot of scalp coverage but is worried that they are losing more than the normal amount, one of the many different counting methods we utilise can help us discover the extent of the issue.

Microscopic examination: By closely examining the roots with a microscope, it is possible to tell what phase the hair strands were in when they were shed. If you have a lot of them coming out in their anagen or catagen phase, it will mean one thing, but if you have an unusual amount in their telogen phase, it will mean another. This is also an excellent way of identifying skin conditions and bacterial infections that might be causing hair loss.

Trichoscopy: This basically means looking really closely at your scalp and hairs with a powerful, high-magnification video camera and displaying what we see on a screen, so you can see exactly what we are looking at. This is particularly good at identifying alopecia-related symptoms and skin problems.

Scalp biopsies: The collection of scalp tissue and hair samples for specific analysis. Usually, we only do this if the issue is particularly tricky to identify, or if we have a good idea what the problem is but need to confirm our suspicions.

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