Female Pattern Hair Loss: A Pilot Study Investigating Combination Therapy With Low-Dose Oral Minoxidil and Spironolactone

Int J Dermatol. 2018 Jan;57(1):104-109. doi: 10.1111/ijd.13838. Epub 2017 Dec 12.

Abstract

Background: Minoxidil and spironolactone are oral antihypertensives known to stimulate hair growth.

Objective: To report on a case series of women with pattern hair loss (PHL) treated with once daily minoxidil 0.25 mg and spironolactone 25 mg.

Methods: Women newly diagnosed with a Sinclair stage 2-5 PHL were scored for hair shedding and hair density before and after 12 months of treatment with oral minoxidil 0.25 mg and spironolactone 25 mg.

Results: A total of 100 women were included in this observational pilot study. Mean age was 48.44 years (range 18-80). Mean hair loss severity at baseline was Sinclair 2.79 (range 2-5). Mean hair shedding score at baseline was 4.82. Mean duration of diagnosis was 6.5 years (range 0.5-30). Mean reduction in hair loss severity score was 0.85 at 6 months and 1.3 at 12 months. Mean reduction in hair shedding score was 2.3 at 6 months and 2.6 at 12 months. Mean change in blood pressure was -4.52 mmHg systolic and -6.48 mmHg diastolic. Side effects were seen in eight women but were generally mild. No patients developed hyperkalemia or any other blood test abnormality. Six of these women continued treatment, and two women who developed urticaria discontinued treatment.

Limitations: Prospective, uncontrolled, open-label observational study.

Discussion: Once daily capsules containing minoxidil 0.25 mg and spironolactone 25 mg appear to be safe and effective in the treatment of FPHL. Placebo-controlled studies to investigate this further are warranted.

Publication types

  • Observational Study

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Alopecia / drug therapy*
  • Diuretics / administration & dosage
  • Diuretics / adverse effects
  • Diuretics / therapeutic use*
  • Drug Combinations
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Minoxidil / administration & dosage
  • Minoxidil / adverse effects
  • Minoxidil / therapeutic use*
  • Pilot Projects
  • Prospective Studies
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Spironolactone / administration & dosage
  • Spironolactone / adverse effects
  • Spironolactone / therapeutic use*
  • Urticaria / chemically induced
  • Vasodilator Agents / administration & dosage
  • Vasodilator Agents / adverse effects
  • Vasodilator Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Young Adult

Substances

  • Diuretics
  • Drug Combinations
  • Vasodilator Agents
  • Spironolactone
  • Minoxidil