Friday, 22 Sep 2023

Is Your Medication Causing Hair Loss? These 11 Drugs Are Common Culprits

Here are 11 drugs that have been known to cause excessive hair loss as a side effect.

1) Cholesterol-lowering medications — atorvastatin and simvastatin

Atorvastatin (Lipitor) and simvastatin (Zocor) belong to a group of cholesterol-lowering medications known as “statins”. Have hair loss is a reported side effect of both drugs. The newer statin, rosuvastatin (Crestor), luckily does not have this risk.

2) Anticoagulant — warfarin

The anticoagulant, warfarin (Coumadin), is a commonly used blood thinner that has been reported to cause hair loss.

3) Blood pressure medications — captopril and lisinopril

ACE inhibitors are a class of medications used to treat high blood pressure. They include the medicines, captopril and lisinopril. Both of the drugs have been known to cause hair loss—but only in around 1% of patients taking them.

4) Psoriasis treatment — acitretin

Acitretin (Soriatane) is a pill used for the treatment of psoriasis and has a well-known adverse effect of hair loss.

5) Anti-arrhythmia drug — amiodarone

Amiodarone (Cordarone or Pacerone) is used in patients with heart rhythm problems known as arrhythmias, and has a rare—but reported—side effect of hair loss.

6) Anticonvulsant — divalproex

Anticonvulsant divalproex (Depakote) is used for seizure disorders, bipolar disorder and for migraine prevention, and can lead to hair loss.

7) Antacid — cimetidine

Cimetidine (Tagamet) is an over-the-counter acid reducer used for GERD and acid reflux. Hair loss has been reported (though infrequently) in people taking it.

8) Gout medication — colchicine

Colchicine is a medication used to treat acute gout attacks. It carries a very small risk of hair loss.

9) Steroids — testosterone and progesterone

Hair loss is reported in people taking the hormones testosterone and/or progesterone. Medications containing progesterone, like Depo-Provera (medroxyprogesterone) injections, Provera, and Prometrium have a well-recorded history of causing hair loss in some people.

10) Acne treatments — isotretinion

Absorica and Accutane are used to treat severe acne and contain the active ingredient, isotretinoin. Hair loss is a well-known adverse reaction for both medications.

11) Antifungal — ketoconazole

Ketoconazole is an oral antifungal pill that can cause hair loss.

In addition to these medications, other well-known causes of hair loss include poor diet, major illness or surgeries, psychological stress, significant weight loss, chronic iron deficiency, thyroid disorders, and childbirth.

Dr O.

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