mother daughter alopecia

Did I Inherit My Mum’s Alopecia?

mother daughter alopeciaBlogger Kristina Francisco shared her heart breaking story on The New York Times website about her experience of hair thinning. Francisco last met her mother when she was four years old; since her parents divorced she has had no contact with her birth mother and only has a few pictures to hold onto instead.

Francisco is the Hawaiian-born daughter of two Filipino immigrants and was blessed with long and straight thick Asian hair in her young age. She said that her hair was so thick she had trouble styling it and her stylist used to take more than one hour using thinning scissors and cutting her hair so that it was more manageable. However now at thirty six years old, Francisco is suffering from female pattern baldness and mentioned she is in and out of the stylists chair in less than twenty minutes.

What Is Female Pattern Baldness/alopecia?

Female pattern baldness does not affect women in the same predictable pattern seen in male pattern baldness, in fact hair loss is more diffuse and women end up experiencing thinning of hair all over the scalp. Medically however, both conditions are referred to as androgenic alopecia.

Hair loss in women although still a slightly taboo topic, is actually perfectly normal and the American Hair Loss Association estimates that women are accountable for up to forty percent of hair loss sufferers. Many women end up experiencing hair loss after they have reached menopause – most likely a result of the change in hormone levels.

Is Female Pattern Baldness Genetic?

It’s very likely that Francisco did actually inherit her hair loss condition from her mother, especially as she claims in her article that her paternal grandmother still has thick healthy hair. As numerous different genes are involved, the genes can be inherited from either parent. Women are more likely to inherit female pattern baldness if a close family member also suffers from the condition.

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