Hair loss in both sexes can be treated with over-the-counter medications containing minoxidil, or men can take prescription pills containing finasteride, explains Mayo Clinic. Permanent surgical corrective surgeries are also available, such as hair transplants and scalp reductions. These approaches may need to be repeated if hair loss continues.
Drug treatments designed for hair loss are somewhat limited for women because prescriptions often address conditions associated with androgen dominance and androgen sensitivity in men, explains WebMD. Hormonal and thyroid imbalances commonly account for hair loss in both sexes, but the pharmaceutical industry is better-equipped to treat male-pattern baldness and lacks a strong initiative to research female hair loss.
It is possible for women to benefit from taking drugs intended for men, such as Propecia, but WebMD warns that doctors are hesitant to prescribe these medications to women because they can create further hormonal disturbances. For many women, androgen is not a relevant cause of their hair loss, and these individuals may benefit more from using products such as Rogaine or Tagamet.
According to Mayo Clinic, it is possible for hormonal fluctuations related to pregnancy and childbirth to temporarily alter a woman's rate of hair growth and stall it for a short period until her hormones realign. Rarer causes of hair loss include lupus and parasitic infections, such as ringworm.