Experiences with Biotin for Methotrexate hair loss - NRAS


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Experiences with Biotin for Methotrexate hair loss

Fall18 profile image
39 Replies

Has anyone tried taking Biotin to help reduce hair loss caused by Methotrexate? I began taking Methotrexate last November, after having to stop taking Hydroxocholoroquine due to significant hair loss and rashes. Initially my hair loss with Methotrexate at 10 mg and Folic acid at 5 mg 6 time a week was manageable. However, as the months went by the hair loss has continued and my hair has significantly thinned out. I am currently on 17.5 mg Methotrexate which works really well for me with the exception of the hair loss. I have spoken to my rheumatologist who has suggested that my next step would be to try using the injectable form of Methotrexate, which I would prefer not to do at this time. I have been researching to see if there were any supplements that could help alleviate the hair loss problem. I came across Biotin, which seems to be effective for many people. Has anyone tried Biotin and what strength do you take?

Thank you very much for any advice or experience you could provide.

39 Replies
weathervane profile image

Hi , I don’t take mtx , im on rituximab with the same issues. I did try the strong er biotin treatment a few years ago without much change so I stopped. My hairdresser has since suggested the new capsules , I haven’t tried them as the thought of taking more tablets doesn’t appeal, however i would be really interested to know if anyone else has had success. I hope it works for you 🌸🌸

Fall18 profile image
Fall18 in reply to weathervane

Thanks. My hairdresser didn't know anyone trying Biotin. Hopefully someone will reply with good results.

KittyJ profile image

I read biotin helps too but I have been taking the high strength tablets for More than 3 months now and have noticed no difference to the thickness of my hair 😔

Fall18 profile image
Fall18 in reply to KittyJ

Sorry to hear, hope you get some hope from some of the replies I received.

KittyJ profile image
KittyJ in reply to Fall18

Yes some interesting options being suggested.

I take biotin .it has made a difference to me. Why are you worried about methotrexate injections? I’ve recently started the injections it’s very easy (it’s a pen)and I feel no pain. If you inject methotrexate you absorb it better so you usually need a lower dose as oral methotrexate can be destroyed during digestion and so the dose is higher to compensate. Lower dose may mean less hair loss.

Fall18 profile image
Fall18 in reply to

I would prefer to wait on the injections if possible to when I would require a higher dose of Methotrexate. If Biotin or the other suggestions posted do not help with my hair loss then I will try the injections. Thanks for your input.

How much Biotin do you take? I've been looking at Solgar 5000 or 10,000 ug.

in reply to Fall18

That’s what I take. I also use volume shampoo and conditioner and a thickening serum. Hair doesn’t move in the wind 🤣😂🤣

AbbeyRoad profile image
AbbeyRoad in reply to

I agree! Also injections bypass the liver on the first pass, so better in many ways. Also, I can have a glass of wine occasionally (I'm not suggesting that everyone does this, but it's okay for me).

in reply to AbbeyRoad

I like a tipple 😁

weymouth321 profile image

Nettle Tea - as advised by Lilla Bek ( yoga teacher, researcher, written several books )

Fall18 profile image
Fall18 in reply to weymouth321

Have some in the cupboard, will start drinking it today!!! Thanks

Coastwalker profile image
Coastwalker in reply to Fall18

Hi Fall18, Weymouth 321 suggestion of Nettle Tea is good advice as Nettles have iron in them.

I have an autoimmune condition, I was told my iron blood levels at 41 were fine as they were ‘within range,’ but members of my health forum site told me my iron bloods needed to be up to around 70/80 if I had hair problems.

After supplementing with iron my hair grew longer and stronger, I stopped the iron, but my hair started to break off again, so jumped back on it again.

Also low in range vitamin B12 or vitamin B12 deficient bloods can be a highly likely cause of hair loss.

Check your vitamin D bloods too as all three (vitamins D and B12. Plus iron all being on the low or even deficiency can go hand in hand with each other.

My friend says her hair has got thicker since on a good safe high dose of vitamin D3 (+K2)

Note - Never supplement vitamin B12 till you get tested for B12 bloods, as it can skewer blood results, always get a base line before supplementing,

Fall18 profile image
Fall18 in reply to Coastwalker

Interesting about bloods being within range. My blood levels are all usually within normal ranges, but I'll take a look at my iron and B12. I already take D3 along with a good multivitamin, Vitamin C and Omega 3 fish oil and I have a very healthy diet (with the exception of a glass or two of wine!!). Thanks

Coastwalker profile image
Coastwalker in reply to Fall18

Doctors often tell patients their bloods are normal, even when patients feel far from normal.

(normal = not under or over the blood range)

We can still have presenting medical problems, for example - if our blood results fall low, within the blood ranges,

*I always ask for a printout of any bloods done (results and ranges) to keep for my own records.

juliejswift profile image

Good hair by Kancha alchemy plus an extra supplement of biotin has been recommended to me for menopausal hair loss. The friends who recommended it always have amazing thick hair and swear by it and they are 10 years older than me!

My daughter has jia and used to use the injectable methotrexate. Apparently no hair supplement products have enough biotin so you take the hair supplements plus more! Good luck and I’m sure you will find a product that works. My friend is very intelligent and conducts a lot of research so I trust her 👍🏻

Fall18 profile image
Fall18 in reply to juliejswift

Thanks so much.

mrdiggs profile image


Fall18 profile image
Fall18 in reply to mrdiggs

My heart goes out to you. Can your rheumatologist recommend any other meds that might work for you?

Hobbledehoy profile image
Hobbledehoy in reply to mrdiggs

You poor darling. Your Rheumatologist should recognise after eight blinkin' years that it's time for something else. Metx is vg for RA control & pain, but hair loss is well known side-effect; it often settles down after a few months, but not for me and obviously not for you. Ask for appt. if you're not due, and say that you've had enough. Stick up for yourself, politely but firmly. And take comfort in the fact that hair is said to recover when Mtx is stopped. Good 🍀 and God bless x

Hessie5 profile image

I too had hair loss - the fear of washing my hair as the amount that would come out was scary. I started taking Collagen powder and found this has helped me. My nails are strong and growing no end, my hair loss drastically reduced, just what appears acceptable. Before it was awful, very dry and breaking. Complete transformation for me.

Fall18 profile image
Fall18 in reply to Hessie5

This sounds just like me. I try to put off washing my hair because it is soooo depressing. I'll look into the collagen powder, Fingers crossed!!!

BonnieG123 profile image

My rheumy put me on biotin as soon as I noticed the thinning. I wish she had put me on it from the beginning because it helped greatly. I stopped the MTX about three months ago. I also stopped folic acid and biotin. Immediately noticed my hair looked awful. Drab and lifeless. Talked to rheumy and she said I should continue both folic acid and biotin as they are like vitamins. Continued to have stomach issues which were presumably from MTX. I read up about both folic acid and biotin. Biotin is a B vitamin and I’ve always been low in B vitamins. Folic acid however may cause stomach distress. So I stopped the folic acid a week ago and stomach issues seem better. I guess it all depends on the individual. Biotin seems to be popular as a supplement to improve hair and nails but read up about it and talk to your pharmacist, too. Best regards.

Fall18 profile image
Fall18 in reply to BonnieG123

I have been doing a lot of research on biotin and all seems good. I've just ordered some from Amazon and fingers crossed there will be some improvement with my hair. I've also bought Plantur 39.

Nain68cariad profile image

Try and eat Biotin rich food. I eat oats daily. Also egg yolks liver chicken are rich in biotins. I"ve been on MTX for 20yrs and no hair loss.

Fall18 profile image
Fall18 in reply to Nain68cariad

I just did a search on biotin rich foods and found out that I have been eating them all along. I have a very healthy diet and eat almonds, spinach, cauliflower, cheeses, mushrooms and my favourite, sweet potatoes, on a regular basis. You are so fortunate not to lose your hair with Mtx. I was under the impression, that most people with RA were switched to another drug after several years on Mtx, or had other added. My brother has RA and started with Mtx, then steroids added, then tried other DMARDS, then biologics. I guess it's really up to the person.

I hope that you stay stable with your Mtx.

Nain68cariad profile image
Nain68cariad in reply to Fall18

Thanks. I have tried sulphasalazine, and leflunomide but always had too many side effects. Mtx is the only drug that seems to work. I also take meloxicam and folic acid. You have only just started mtx so it may take some time to settle. I started on tablets but now on injections 15mg per week.

It really is a battle we fight with the various treatments until we find the one that works. Hair loss is a difficult side effect to bear so I hope you are able to juggle the dose to suit your needs. It is a long journey my friend but there is a lot of help out there.

I am 70 now and had this dreaded disease for 24yrs. Cared for 3yr old grandson today and now have a frozen shoulder to deal with...

Reeceregan profile image

My lovely long straight blond hair thinned out and broke off terribly from high dose prednisone. I started Biotin and used Nioxin shampoo and conditioner. It stopped the loss and began to grow back and it is now almost back to normal. It takes a while to recover but it worked for me. Just as well as it looks like I have to start MTX shortly.

Troygirl profile image
Troygirl in reply to Reeceregan

Last year I had long (down past the middle of my back) thick hair. Today, it has become brittle and all broke off up to my ears! It happened so fast. Within a couple of months. It was so terrible I cried! What to do, what to do...now wear these little hair pieces I found on amazon!

I also found these really neat easy to clip in hair extensions.

Imagine me with my once beautiful long hair having to wear extensions?

PS. I have been taking Biotin even before I had RA, did not matter.

I found that using Redken Extreme Anti-Snap serum is helping with the brittleness and stopping even more breakage.

Also use the Redken Extreme Shampoo & Conditioner

It will take years for it to grow back (if it does grow back) to how long it was just 12 months ago!

I also found that I do not have to shave my legs or under my arms anymore, because the hair IS NOT GROWING there to shave! What the heck is up with that?

It is all these nasty chemo like biologicals being pumped into my veins!

RA sucks!

The medication they give us sucks!

Reeceregan profile image
Reeceregan in reply to Troygirl

Yes, sounds just like my story. I cried so much, I’ve had long thick hair since I was 13. Only ever had it trimmed, never cut. It’s been 18 months and although growing back and very thick again, it certainly isn’t as long. You’re right, it will take years...if it ever does...to get the length back. I too, had extensions put in all around my head, to give it the thickness back, and even the length. They’re out now so that’s a bonus. To think it may happen again after starting MTX is just devastating.

Fall18 profile image
Fall18 in reply to Reeceregan

Fingers crossed it works for me. xx

AbbeyRoad profile image

I use Liquid Folate with MTX and have had no problems with hair loss. A doctor discovered thru genetic testing that my body does not convert folic acid well, so encouraged me to use a liquid form of folate that is easier for my body to absorb. I buy Liquid Folate thru Amazon (brand is Designs for Health). Good luck.

Fall18 profile image
Fall18 in reply to AbbeyRoad

I'll ask my rheumatologist about liquid folate at my next appointment in January. Thanks.

AbbeyRoad profile image
AbbeyRoad in reply to Fall18

Be aware that rheumatologists often don't have knowledge about supplements. If you see a primary care or Naturopath, they would be best able to discuss this option.

jojom912 profile image

My doc gave me a RX for Folic Acid with the methotrexate just for hair loss. I was only on the Methotrexate 2 weeks and got pneumonia and went off.

Tweets71 profile image

My sister recommend that I start taking biotin 5000, she started taking them around 3 months ago and couldn’t believe the amount of hair growth, even her baby hair has grown longer. I have started methotrexate injections so was really worried about hair loss. I started taking biotin a week ago so a bit early to tell but will definitely keep you posted on how I get on.

Waldine profile image

I do not know why, but this remedy did not work on me and did not affect the hair loss in any way. I end up having to use a wig, out in the future I'm thinking about getting a hair transplant. Unfortunately, I do not have any friends or acquaintances who would have previously encountered such a procedure or problem, but judging by the reviews, this is a very cool procedure that can return the hair. I have long dreamed of coloring my hair, but it is so fragile that I am afraid to harm it. I think after I do a hair transplant, the first thing I will do is repaint them. I've even found a website hairmadnesssalon.com/best-b... where they tell you about it in detail! Well, let's see how long my hair lasts...

CagneysMum profile image

I suffered hair loss with my methotrexate (pills and injections) and tried biotin on advice from my rheumy nurse who said a lot of patients had found it helped. Over a period of 6 months my hairdresser noticed a big improvement whilst I was taking it with new hair growth and slowing down of hair loss. I took it for about 2 years and stopped 3 months ago. I was nervous about stopping but hair seems ok so far . Good luck 👍

Fall18 profile image
Fall18 in reply to CagneysMum

I'm so happy that the Biotin worked for you. I tried it for a year and unfortunately did not see much of an improvement. However, about a month after I stopped taking it I noticed that I wasn't losing as much hair after shampooing.🤥

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