Acupuncture for Frontal Fibrosing Alopecia

Hi all. I was diagnosed with frontal Fibrosing Alopecia last august '16 (35 yr old man). I had gone to a dermatologist because my eyebrows and beard had been falling out. He then looked at my hair line and noticed little red marks at the hair roots. I have had these little marks since i was in my 20's which never really gave me any cause for concern and my hair had not been falling out on my head. However he said this was part of the condition. He said it was very rare and he'd never seen it in a man. He then started looking up medical journals online to see about the best way to treat it. He suggested some drops for the eyebrows which has worked to a limited extent and my eyebrows have returned a bit but nothing like a full set. However I regretfully agreed to have some steroid injections in my hair line. Since that day i started getting a buzzing and tingling feeling in my head and my hair has started shedding and has receded by over an inch at the front and seems to be thinning elsewhere on my head too.

I know some will think that it would have probably gotten worse anyway but it was literally that night i got this tingling feeling that has not left me since. I feel these injections are not suitable for FFA for some reason as they have definitely made my case much worse (on my head).

Anyway i have started going to get accupunture. I've only been twice and i feel it is having a positive effect. The buzzing is reducing and my eyebrows seem to have little hairs appearing. No change on the beard front yet.

Just thought I'd share this and will keep you posted.

Has anyone else tried accupunture?

8 Replies

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  • Hi, I was diagnosed with FFA in November 2015. I would love to know what triggered it, the dermatologists told me that this type of alopecia is usually found in menopausal women, I am 52 and had my right ovary removed which triggered my menopause. I was going through a very stressful period in my life. I had a very nasty fall and incurred a head injury, there was bruising to the scalp and this was the starting point where the hair started to fall. I personally feel that FFA may be stress related or that the stress was the trigger but I am not sure as both menopause/ stress/ fall all came around the same time.

    The nhs dermatology department have told me they have limited resources and that that they can only offer me either Hydroxychloroquine, which hasn't worked for me, or steroid injections. I had a few injections just before Christmas and it was the first time that I had felt calm and a relief of the redness and irritation, the thing is it only lasted for a few weeks. I went for second lot of injection late February but again the effect hasn't lasted long enough.

    I massage Argan oil into my scalp several times a day it moisturises the the dry scaly skin and seems to ease the inflammation slightly. I use GUM as its a decent quality.

    I was also prescribed steroid lotions firstly Elocon then Dermovate which I used for about a year but I've stopped using it because I felt my scalp seemed more irritated when I was using them and I didn't feel they were having any effect on stopping the hair loss.

    I take Florisene a multi vitamin that contains iron, biotin ect supposedly good for thickening womens hair, (the dermatologist told me that they like ferritin levels to be at least 70 for healthy hair, levels below this can cause hair loss and that they all take Biotin within the department). I took for about 6 months and didn't think it was having an much effect but when I ran out and stopped taking it I noticed lots of hair loss so I'm back on it again.

    I am also trying turmeric tablets as they are supposedly good at reducing inflammation. Also vitamin B as my levels were low in my blood tests anythings worth a try!

    I have read so many articles with different views but no one who seems to have found a cure. I find it interesting that most of the websites and my dermatologist say that this is a rare form of Alopecia and usually found in menopausal women but you are male and my dermatologist has known of one male patient to be diagnosed with it so can we eliminate the fact that it maybe oestrogen related? She also feels that this type of Alopecia is on the increase.

    I have ordered a book from the USA 'The Hormonally Vulnerable Woman', written by Geoffrey Redmond the founder and director of the Hormone Centre of New York an endocrinologist with 20 years experience. He has treated many women with Alopecia that was triggered by hormone inbalance I'll keep you updated on my finds.

    I wish you look with the acupuncture.

  • Thanks for the reply. One thing I forgot to mention was that after my first session of accupunture the itching and scaliness went completely. This alone is a good result for me.

    I too take biotin, magnesium, zinc which are all supposedly good for hair growth / health. Was thinking it may have been that that helped the eyebrows comeback.

    Would be interested in your findings from the book.

    Will keep you posted on the accupunture.

    Thanks.

  • Hi Rich, ive lost almost all of my right eyebrow and my left is thinning over the past month and half. Its rather distressing as im only 31. I had a baby but this was 7 months ago, but i guess it could be due to lack of sleep taking its toll on me. My hair is thinning so much too and wont stop falling 🙁

    My dermatologist appointment is over a month away but im worried by that time i will have lost them both. What drops did the dermatologist prescribe you? And how long after did you see regrowth? I go back to work in September and worried about how i will look by then.

  • Hi there sorry I don't look on this site much. My dermatologist gave me latanaprost for the eyebrows. But I think you have to have a prescription to get it. Ask your dermatologist about it when you see him / her.

  • Look at the post from jacrjacr about 4 months ago the finds are very interesting.

  • Hi can't seem to find it could you please send me the link?

    Thanks

  • Hi, just click on followers at the top of the page and you will see jacrjacr they have posted many times lots of information from them. Great news with the acupuncture I think I will give that a try.

    Thanks Rich99

  • I am pretty sure that if your hair is returning its not FFA as with that condition the immune system attacks the hair follicle causing the hair to fall out and the follicle to close over. No more hair from there ever. My loss has stopped but I am on lots of medication( that I am sure is not good for me but the hair loss was not helping my other conditions). I have a patch where the hair is gone but its not coming back I am told.

    I have not tried acupuncture though I get it for other reasons.

    Keep posting about how it works for you. By the way did the dermatologist do a skin biopsy ? Its the only certain way to diagnose FFA.

    Dee

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