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Advances in health and medicine.
Marjorie Bekaert Thomas
Advances in health and medicine.
General Health Channel
Reported November 21, 2007

Thinning Hair? Blame Smoking!

(Ivanhoe Newswire) – We know smoking damages our lungs. New research suggests it doesn’t do our hair any good either.

A study conducted among Asian men shows smoking increases the risk for hair loss.

Investigators from Taiwan looked at a type of hair loss called androgenetic alopecia in 740 middle aged and older men. Androgenetic alopecia is the most common form of hair loss in men and is generally considered to be hereditary. But environmental factors may also come into play, and these researchers decided to see how smoking status would affect the condition.

All the men were surveyed during in-person interviews about their risk for androgenetic alopecia, when they first began losing their hair, and smoking status. Age was a major predictor of hair loss, but results also showed men who smoked were significantly more likely to have the condition, especially if they reported smoking 20 or more cigarettes a day.

The investigators speculate smoking may increase the risk for hair loss by either destroying hair follicles or damaging bodily functions responsible for maintaining a healthy head of hair.

The researchers note the Asians in the study generally had a lower risk for androgentic alopecia than Caucasians.

This article was reported by, which offers Medical Alerts by e-mail every day of the week. To subscribe, click on: /newsalert/.

SOURCE: Archives of Dermatology, 2007;143:1401-1406

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