Letters to the Editor

Psychosocial Counseling May Be Best Treatment for Hair Loss



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Am Fam Physician. 2004 Mar 15;69(6):1362.

to the editor: I enjoyed the article on hair loss disorders in the July 1, 2003 issue of American Family Physician.1 However, I was surprised that the authors’ discussion of androgenetic alopecia (male-pattern baldness) excluded an important alternative to surgery and pharmacologic therapy: no medical treatment.2 Certainly, the safest and least invasive way to address the psychosocial impact of hair loss is through psychosocial counseling. An earnest conversation about body image and reassurance that hair loss is a normal part of life might help some patients avoid the costs and risks of pharmacologic therapy or surgical intervention, and those associated with the quack remedies hawked for this medically benign condition.

REFERENCES

1. Springer K, Brown M, Stulberg DL. Common hair loss disorders. Am Fam Physician. 2003;68:93–102.

2. Drake LA, Dinehart SM, Farmer ER, Goltz RW, Graham GF, Hordinsky MK, et al. Guidelines of care for androgenetic alopecia. American Academy of Dermatology. J Am Acad Dermatol. 1996;35:465–9.

Send letters to Kenneth W. Lin, MD, MPH, Associate Deputy Editor for AFP Online, e-mail: afplet@aafp.org, or 11400 Tomahawk Creek Pkwy., Leawood, KS 66211-2680.

Please include your complete address, e-mail address, and telephone number. Letters should be fewer than 400 words and limited to six references, one table or figure, and three authors.

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