Hair loss in both men and women is incredibly common but the pattern of loss is very different. While male hair loss usually occurs at the crown and temple areas, females tend to experience an overall thinning of hair, beginning on top and at the sides. Although the stigma of hair loss in women is greater, its effect on both sexes can be very distressing.
Male Pattern Hair Loss
Published in 1975 by Dr O’tar Norwood, The Norwood Classification (pictured below) is the most widely used description of hair loss in men – known as Male Pattern Hair Loss or Balding. The chart can provide a useful indication of the extent of your hair loss:
Class 2 – Some temporal recession, not classed as balding
Class 3 – Earliest signs of balding characterised by deeper temporal recession. Vertex (v) balding i.e. spot loss on top of the head may also occur at this stage
Class 4 – Further frontal loss and growing vertex. Both areas however are still separated by a bridge of hair across the top of the head
Class 5 – Loss at the front and top areas increases and the top bridge of hair begins to thin significantly
Class 6 – The connecting bridge of hair has disappeared leaving a large bald area. Hair at the sides remains healthy and intact
Class 7 – Extensive pattern balding with only sides and back of hair remaining
Please feel free to speak to our consultant to discuss your classification of hair loss and whether or not you’d be a likely candidate for hair transplant surgery.
Female hair loss (genetic)
In terms of genetic hair loss in women, the Ludwig Classification (below) identifies three major stages:
Type 1 – Mild – Virtually unnoticeable hair loss and alternative ways to camouflage are possible. Surgical hair replacement is not considered necessary
Type 2 – Moderate – Significant thinning on top which results in overall loss of density and thickness. Hair transplant surgery may be considered if the existing/’donor’ hair at back and sides is suitable
Type 3 – Extensive – characterised by extensive loss on top which cannot be camouflaged. The success of a hair transplant is entirely dependent on the amount and quality of donor hair. However, in most cases, hair loss to this extent cannot be remedied by a transplant. Go to our Hair Replacement section to explore other excellent alternatives to hair restoration.
While genetic hair loss is irreversible, there are many other forms of female hair loss – perhaps caused by a medical condition or illness - that can be treated. If you are seriously considering a hair transplant, it’s important to seek advice from an expert as soon as possible.