Diabetes is one of the biggest public health problems in America. According to the American Diabetes Association, nearly 30.3 million adult Americans were known to have diabetes in 2015. That represents 9.4 percent of the population.
That is a staggering number. Since RHRLI treats patients from all walks of life, we’ve had more than a few patients with the disease. While there’s no cure for diabetes, patients can live long, happy lives if they keep their blood sugar levels in check, eat a proper diet, and exercise. Diabetes patients must take medication and there are some who question whether the popular diabetes medication metformin leads to hair loss. At RHR LI, we believe in educating our patients so let’s talk about the connection between hair loss, diabetes, and the diabetes medication metformin.
Diabetes and Hair Loss
Diabetes is a metabolic disease that causes high blood sugar, according to Healthline. It occurs when the body doesn’t store enough insulin, the hormone which moves sugar from the blood into cells, where it’s stored as energy. Having excess sugar in your blood will damage to vital organs over time. It can also damage your blood vessels. This is where hair loss stems from.Damaged blood vessels can slow down your hair growth cycle and can cause you to lose more hair than usual. Not just on your head, but also on your arms, legs, and body. Diabetics are also more likely to suffer from alopecia areata, which occurs when the immune system attacks your hair follicles.
Metformin and Hair Loss
Metformin is one of the most commonly prescribed diabetes drugs. According to WebMD, Metformin helps restore your body’s proper response to the insulin you do produce. It also decreases the amount of sugar your liver creates. According to Healthline, there are a few isolated reports of hair loss related to taking metformin. One involved eyebrow and eyelash loss. A 2013 study suggests that that long-term use of metformin and folate can lead to a decrease in levels of Vitamin B-12, resulting in hair loss. It’s important to note that the link between metformin and hair loss isn’t completely clear.
RHRLI and ARTAS® Are Your Hair Loss Solutions
Although there is some connection to diabetes and hair loss, there’s little connection to diabetes medications and hair loss. But if you suffer from hair loss for any reason, RHRLI can provide you with a solution: the ARTAS® system, which uses robotic technology to transplant healthy hairs to where they’re needed. ARTAS® is minimally invasive and many patients report little to no pain, once the procedure is over. You can be back to normal in just a few days.
Dr. Baiju Gohil, MD, our board-certified surgeon, meets with every one of our patients and performs all of our hair restoration procedures. When you meet for your initial consultation, Dr. Gohil will explain how the ARTAS® System works and will answer any questions you may have. Learn about the RHRLI edge and contact us today.