Hair loss in women, a disease with multiple causes – rts.ch

The Oscars incident between Will Smith and Chris Rock on March 28 shed light on the case of Jada Pinkett Smith: a hereditary feminine alopecia. This autoimmune disease causes hair loss in women of any age.

Humans have an average of 100,000 to 150,000 hairs and lose 40 to 100 per day, with peaks that can rise to as high as 175 during seasonal changes. Hair loss is considered pathological when a person loses more than 100 hairs per day for a relatively long period of up to two months.

Hair loss can be a temporary event caused by factors such as stress, illness, cancer treatment, or iron deficiency. Sometimes, this phenomenon can last longer, especially when an individual suffers from hair loss.

immune disease

Alopecia is an autoimmune disease that causes accelerated hair loss, sometimes accompanied by hair loss in other parts of the body. Androgenetic alopecia is a form of genetic alopecia that can occur in all individuals. Although the majority of men are affected, more and more women are consulting.

For Michel Brouard, dermatologist specializing in trichology at the University Hospital Center Vaud (CHUV), who gave an interview to CQFD, this difference is due to the fact that the effect of hair loss is not the same for women as it is for men.

About 80% of women who have hair loss problems suffer from hair loss. This is called male female alopecia. The disease manifests itself in a decrease in hair density mainly on the top of the head and in the frontal part. Density can continue to decrease over time and can lead to complete disappearance of hair from the whole body.

>> Listen to Dr. Michael Broward’s explanation on the CQFD microphone:

When a woman loses her hair / CQFD / 11 min. / January 7, 2021

Scarves and wigs

There are oral medical treatments with a success rate of 60-70%, but they have significant side effects, according to specialists. Many people are turning to another, more aesthetic solution: wearing a scarf or wig. The On en parle program focused on the phenomenon of wigs among people with alopecia.

>> Listen to the On parle program dedicated to wigs:

Living With A Wig / Talking About It / 14 minutes. / 18 October 2021

More and more certificates

According to Dr. Michael Broward, the cosmetic effect of alopecia is stronger in women than in men and can become a source of suffering. “Wearing a wig allows me to avoid staring at people too hard,” Malika says. She started losing her hair at the age of 10 and now she wears a wig.

It is a disease that manifests itself especially at the level of other people’s gaze.

Malika, 27 years old

>> See Malika’s testimony about Tataki:

Since Chris Rock joke about Jada Pinkett Smith’s alopecia, several characters have spoken out to break taboos about female hair loss. According to the American Alopecia Areata Foundation, 7 million people are affected by this condition in the United States and 147 million people worldwide.

American actress Viola Davis has spoken on social media about her experience and her hair loss that began at the age of 28. In her testimony, she explains how painful the experience has been, especially in an industry where physical appearance is central.

Camille Lancy

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