Postpartum effluvium is a well-known clinical fact. However, following some minor research activities in the 1960s, very little has happened on the research front of the subject. It was hypothesized that postpartum hair loss might be a manifestation of a change in the hair growth cycle occurring normally during pregnancy. Recently, new research has been published trying to explain the mechanism of action behind this frequently occurring hair growth disruption, and to develop a functional treatment schedule and regime. Under normal circumstances, postpartum effluvium will disappear by itself as a function of time, and therefore adequate information to the patient is important in order to reduce the anxiety that it will not be a permanent problem. However, in some subjects it can manifest itself for longer stages and even become permanent. At the present time, treatments aim at correcting underlying hormonal imbalances and at improving overall cosmetic appearance. Several treatments in the form of thyroid supplementation, topical progesterone and estradiol lotions, and even oral contraceptive have been studied. All the available studies have significant limitations in their scientific basis, such as small sample size, absence of control group, or highly subjective measurement of treatment response. It is evident from the available studies that no specific treatment has been investigated thoroughly enough to justify recommendation in clinical treatment or to be termed "effective." Without the ability to provide a pathogenic diagnosis or causality criteria, chances are low that a treatment by trial and error will adequately be able to control hair effluvium. Current hair treatment strategies are symptomatic and nonspecific; therefore, future research must aim at developing new and targeted methods with a point of departure in observing concomitant biological mechanisms. Based on the research in the 1960s, current knowledge about the hair follicle and the regulation of the hair cycles, we believe that an anagen inducer in the form of a specific proteoglycan replacement therapy (Nourkrin® with Marilex® from Pharma Medico) could be a proper solution to shorten the hair eclipse phenomenon - and give the patient a feeling of control and empowerment.
Keywords: anagen inducer; hair follicle; proteoglycan; replacement therapy.
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