Male and female pattern baldness is caused by hair follicles reacting to the testosterone hormone. Alopecia areata damages hair follicles due to imbalances in the immune system caused by stress, disease, infection, chemotherapy or genetic predisposition.
For male pattern baldness, ﬁnasteride can be used to block the impact of testosterone on hair follicles and can restore some of the hair lost. Minoxidil lotion can be used for male and female pattern baldness and can reduce or stop hair loss in the long term.
Corticosteroid injections into the scalp or topical corticosteroid creams and ointments can be used to deal with alopecia areata, as they suppress the immune system from attacking hair follicles. Immunotherapy involves the application of diphencyprone (DPCP) solution onto the scalp, and ultraviolet light therapy involves shining UVA or UVB rays on the scalp. These all have variable results and side effects. Often alopecia areata can be a temporary form of hair loss that does not require treatment. If it’s permanent and does not respond to these treatments, then hair can be surgically implanted into the scalp.