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What Is Hirsutism? Causes and Treatments

by Busines Newswire
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Hirsutism, characterized by excessive hair growth in women in areas typically associated with male-pattern hair growth, such as the face, chest, and back, can have significant emotional and psychological impacts. It often stems from hormonal imbalances, particularly elevated levels of androgens (male hormones) or increased sensitivity of hair follicles to these hormones. This condition, affecting about 5-10% of women, can be distressing. Read more about it in this article.

Causes of Hirsutism

  • Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS): Hirsutism, or excessive and unwanted body hair, is primarily related to the PCOS hormonal disorder that results in increased androgen secretion.


  • Adrenal Gland Disorders: Some other endocrine disorders that cause increased levels of androgen include congenital adrenal hyperplasia, or adrenal tumors.


  • Medications: The use of anabolic steroids and some hypertensive drugs has been known to cause hirsutism as a side effect of the administration of these medicines.


  • Genetics: There is evidence that hirsutism may be hereditary: the chances of it occurring in a woman depend on whether it does so in her relatives.


  • Idiopathic Hirsutism: Sometimes, the reason for hirsutism can be said to be unknown thus being referred to as idiopathic hirsutism.

Implications of Hirsutism

Apart from some anatomical features, hirsutism may cause emotional upset and influence body image, self and life quality. Hirsutism disturbs women affected by it which results in anxiety, depression, and in some extreme cases lead to isolation due to the discomfort associated with their looks. Furthermore, the condition interferes with interpersonal interactions and limits the clients’ engagement in social roles and social activities.

Top Treatments for Hirsutism

  • Oral Contraceptives: The estrogen–progestogen combination contained in combined oral contraceptives also tends to suppress androgen levels and consequently Hirsutism.


  • Anti-Androgens: Spironolactone and finasteride are among such medications that act directly on hormones regulating hair growth: spironolactone blocks androgen receptors while finasteride prevents androgen synthesis.


  • Insulin-Sensitizing Agents: Some drugs such as Metformin given for the treatment of PCOS work towards enhancing the insulin sensitivity, which helps decrease the androgen production and hirsutism manifestations.


  • Laser Hair Removal: This technique involves the application of intense light, which when directed onto the hair follicles causes permanent disability of the hair follicles thus preventing hair growth. This means that several follow-up sessions may be necessary in order to reap the benefits. To get this treatment visit a best skin specialist in Islamabad.


  • Electrolysis: The electrolysis process aims at attending to the hair follicles and eradication by using a kind of an electric current and therefore it is a form of hair removal that is permanent. However, it can prove to be yet another time-consuming process and may take several sessions to complete.


  • Topical Creams: Some creams including eflornithine (Vaniqa) work effectively resulting in slower hair growth as they help to reduce the common enzyme needed for hair growth.


  • Weight Management: Losing weight can also effectively bring Hirsutism and hormonal balance back to normal among women having PCOS.


  • Hair Removal Techniques: Temporary hair removal methods such as shaving, waxing, and depilatory creams offer short-term relief from unwanted hair growth.


Hirsutism is a distressing condition that can significantly impact a woman’s emotional well-being and quality of life. However, with the right treatment approach, including medical interventions, cosmetic procedures, and lifestyle modifications, its symptoms can be effectively managed. Consulting with a skin specialist can help you deal with this problem effectively.