Hair loss treatments are becoming important in today’s era of stress. Back in 1993, a study conducted by Glamour Magazine said that more than half women believe that their hair makes them look good or bad, irrespective of what they wear or if they have put makeup on or not. Also, more than 21 million women in the U.S experience hair fall and the main reason is stress.
However, when we talk about cyproterone, its use is not approved in the US. Whereas, products outside of the US include cyproterone under the brand names Dianette, Androcur, Andro-Diane, Cyprone, and Cyprostat. If you are still wondering about what is cyproterone then it is a hormone-based medication also known as antiandrogen that reduces testosterone in the body.
In other parts of the world, it controls the effects of testosterone. In men, it helps in curing hypersexuality and overactive sex drive and it also helps in managing prostate cancer symptoms. In women, it can help with excess hair growth, and it also reduces scalp hair loss due to high levels of male hormones.
This hormone can even help in the production of birth control pills. With the addition of another hormone, ethinyl estradiol, it forms a birth control pill for women. It is also used to treat early puberty and severe acne. Dermatologist Amy McMichael, professor of dermatology at Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center, Winston Salem, N.C., says, “Cyproterone acetate and its derivatives work in female pattern hair loss by blocking male hormone reaction on hair follicles.”
Female Pattern Baldness is a kind of baldness that causes hair loss that affects women. It’s similar to male pattern baldness, except the fact that women can lose their hair in a different pattern than men and it is also called androgenetic alopecia. The male hormone in women causes miniaturization of the follicles, which causes smaller hair on the top of the scalp. Once the action of hormone is blocked, the hair no longer remains miniatures and the hair density increase. It’s been 10 years that this medicine has been used as a hair loss treatment.
However, if you want to control your testosterone level in your body while residing in the US, you will be disappointed to know that the hormone is not available as a prescription in the US.
The reason behind the ban are many and we will be discussing a few.
Cyproterone acetate was first brought into the market in the 1970s. Despite the long-running appeal of these medications to control acne, hair loss, and reproduction, the products don’t exist without controversy. One of its controversies involved clotting of blood for women taking it as birth control pills. Some evidence shows that alone cyproterone didn’t do the deed, it was with ethinyl estradiol that made the blood clot. Afterward, countries like Canada started putting a warning indication with the medication.
The possible risks of using cyproterone acetate-containing products include damaging of liver, depression or other mood swings, breathlessness, Osteoporosis generally in women, erectile dysfunction, reduced sperm count and enlarged breasts in men.
People suffering from liver disease, alcoholics, and insulin-dependent diabetes shouldn’t use medication that contains cyproterone. Like all other drug-based preparations, cyproterone acetate also has potential adverse effects. The most dangerous side effect is liver toxicity as it might affect the release of other bile juices and affect digestion as well.
DHT or dihydrotestosterone is the main hormone responsible for pattern baldness in both men and women. It is caused when testosterone combines with alpha-5-reductase.
Nonetheless, cyproterone acetate is sometimes used in male hair loss but rather only as a treatment for prostate problems as it can affect the masculine traits majorly. Even in females, it isn’t given regularly but only as one of the last options for managing female pattern hair loss.
Women who are pregnant or think that they might be pregnant should never think of taking this drug. It is also not suggested for women who are breastfeeding or those under 18 years old, and people with a muscle loss disease.
Furthermore, if there is not a definitive diagnosis that suggests that hair loss is due to excess androgen in the body, systemic treatment using cyproterone acetate is not recommended for you. Because the drug affects the entire bodily system. That is s the reason most physicians would opt for topical treatments for hair loss or those that are directly applied to the hair and scalp and not that include cyproterone.