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Follica impact on thinning hair


#1

I know that the Follica wounding shouldn’t have a negative impact on existing follicles per some of the earlier postings on this subject. What impact is anticipated on wounded areas that currently produce thinning hair? Is there any reason to consider taking DHT blockers to protect existing follicles to maximize the Follica treatment?


#2

Good questions.

As you alluded to, the existing follicles are like 4mm deep whereas the Folica wounding couldn’t possible wipe out more than 1mm of skin. So it shouldn’t kill existing follicles.

When it comes to scalp hairs (but not beard & body hairs), I think exposure to androgens seems to be just bad by definition. Androgenic hair damage does not seem to be a yes/no question but rather just a question of degree. Even in women and men born with “good” MPB genes, it’s probably still a negative for lifetime thinning & pigmenting issues. (We all know Ronald Reagan had amazingly MPB-resistant hair genes, what with that thick NW#1 mop in his 80s. I think the fact that he still had a lot of black hairs in his 70s is probably not a coincidence.)

I think the DHT blockers will probably prove advantageous during the formative stages of the Folica process. Shield the new/rejuvenated hairs from DHT while things are in motion. Given the short window it seems like a no-brainer to take DHT suppressants during this treatment window.

As for lifetime treatments afterwards? Hard to know.

It would probably help. But the question of how NECESSARY it is, that remains open. If we can regenerate hairs with this method once, then I’m inclined to think we can do it multiple times in life. That makes me want to toss the long-term DHT suppressant drugs once the follicles are formed. (F*CK it, I’d rather have to keep redoing the Folica process several more times in my life than spend it on DHT blockers with no sex drive.)

Will the unprotected DHT follicles die very quickly? I don’t know. I do know the typical anecdotal wounding-based regrowth story does not include anything about the hairs dying again in a couple years though.

Folica docs have made some comments about how there’s no reason to assume the same DHT susceptibility in the new hairs. But to tell you the truth, this stuff sounded like crap to me when I read it. I basically heard them saying, “We hope the DHT situation is different, and we don’t already know for sure that it’s the same yet, so it might be different.” This doesn’t go very far towards convincing me of anything. I find it much more likely that we’ll just get hairs with similar ultimate-lifetime DHT susceptibility as what the originals had.

But keep this stuff in mind –

Our original MPB-ing hairs are dying of androgen exposure EVER SINCE PUBERTY, not just since whenever we actually began noticing visible MPB symptoms.

And, adult androgen levels (even without being suppressed by Fin/Dut) are gonna be different from the raging hormones of puberty.

And furthermore, I think it has been demonstrated that hairs that aren’t exposed to DHT during puberty do not ever go bald later, even when the hairs have genetic MPB susceptibility and the man regains normal adult hormone levels later. There may very well be something critical happening during puberty that, when absent, will leave hairs without MPB problems even when they genetically should have them.


#3

»
»
» But keep this stuff in mind –
»
» Our original MPB-ing hairs are dying of androgen exposure EVER SINCE
» PUBERTY, not just since whenever we actually began noticing visible MPB
» symptoms.
»

I’m not really convinced about this. Thi does not explain why some ppl go suddenly rapidly bald at an older age.

There are guys who start loosing at around 35, their hair was fine for 17 years after their puberty ended, and then suddenly its going


#4

I don’t see the contradiction about it.

I agree there’s probably some genetic programming to worsen or lessen the impacts at one age or another. But the total androgen damage is still basically a cumulative thing for sure. Everthing about the use of DHT blockers points exactly in this direction.

My clothing might get more or less wear & tear at various times. Some days rapidly and other days hardly at all. But the real measure of what wears a hole in my clothes is still the cumulative total damage incurred.

Everything I’ve read leads me to think that androgen damage is androgen damage, whether it’s the first 10% of the thinning that we can’t even detect or the last 10% that’s so painfully obvious.


#5

Here is what David Steinberg apparently has to say about Follica and DHT.
I have no idea how credible it is, it is possible that it is not Steinberg but some random person on the internet but bear in mind Daphne Zohar is an editor on the site it was posted on.

David Steinberg 1/4/08 2:12 pm
I am with the company. While we have not tested this in humans yet we fully expect that hair will persist. There are multiple reasons for this. First of all, consider hair transplants - while they have other flaws, the hair does indeed persist despite the presence of circulating DHT. In a distinct, but similar way, the Follica treatment changes the microenvironment of the follicles. Further, a single hair cycle lasts several years, and at the very least the new hair should last one full cycle (because of the underlying physiology of the condition). Also, circulating levels of DHT actually drop over a man’s life. We have seen numerous clinical reports of patients showing sustained hair cycling when exposed to conditions similar to the treatment Follica is pursuing (in a carefully directed and controlled way).

In the post above ‘Steiberg’ says he is with the company, he is not listed as an official Follica employee acording to their site although he is a Puretech-ventures partner, who are Follica’s parent company.

On another off topic note, I don’t think it is a fair observasion anymore for people who say that Follica only have 4 full time employees, when they have the expertise following people at their disposal.

http://www.follicabio.com/content/scientific-advisory-board/
http://www.follicabio.com/content/board-and-executive-team/
http://puretechventures.com/content/team.asp?mainPage=team&subPage=all#
http://puretechventures.com/content/team.asp?mainPage=team&subPage=advisors


#6

» Good questions.
»
» As you alluded to, the existing follicles are like 4mm deep whereas the
» Folica wounding couldn’t possible wipe out more than 1mm of skin. So it
» shouldn’t kill existing follicles.
»
»
» When it comes to scalp hairs (but not beard & body hairs), I think
» exposure to androgens seems to be just bad by definition. Androgenic hair
» damage does not seem to be a yes/no question but rather just a question of
» degree. Even in women and men born with “good” MPB genes, it’s probably
» still a negative for lifetime thinning & pigmenting issues. (We all know
» Ronald Reagan had amazingly MPB-resistant hair genes, what with that thick
» NW#1 mop in his 80s. I think the fact that he still had a lot of black
» hairs in his 70s is probably not a coincidence.)
»
»
» I think the DHT blockers will probably prove advantageous during the
» formative stages of the Folica process. Shield the new/rejuvenated hairs
» from DHT while things are in motion. Given the short window it seems like
» a no-brainer to take DHT suppressants during this treatment window.
»
»
»
»
»
» As for lifetime treatments afterwards? Hard to know.
»
» It would probably help. But the question of how NECESSARY it is, that
» remains open. If we can regenerate hairs with this method once, then I’m
» inclined to think we can do it multiple times in life. That makes me want
» to toss the long-term DHT suppressant drugs once the follicles are formed.
» (F*CK it, I’d rather have to keep redoing the Folica process several more
» times in my life than spend it on DHT blockers with no sex drive.)
»
» Will the unprotected DHT follicles die very quickly? I don’t know. I do
» know the typical anecdotal wounding-based regrowth story does not include
» anything about the hairs dying again in a couple years though.
»
» Folica docs have made some comments about how there’s no reason to assume
» the same DHT susceptibility in the new hairs. But to tell you the truth,
» this stuff sounded like crap to me when I read it. I basically heard them
» saying, “We hope the DHT situation is different, and we don’t already know
» for sure that it’s the same yet, so it might be different.” This doesn’t
» go very far towards convincing me of anything. I find it much more likely
» that we’ll just get hairs with similar ultimate-lifetime DHT susceptibility
» as what the originals had.
»
»
»
»
»
» But keep this stuff in mind –
»
» Our original MPB-ing hairs are dying of androgen exposure EVER SINCE
» PUBERTY, not just since whenever we actually began noticing visible MPB
» symptoms.
»
» And, adult androgen levels (even without being suppressed by Fin/Dut) are
» gonna be different from the raging hormones of puberty.
»
»
» And furthermore, I think it has been demonstrated that hairs that aren’t
» exposed to DHT during puberty do not ever go bald later, even when the
» hairs have genetic MPB susceptibility and the man regains normal adult
» hormone levels later
. There may very well be something critical
» happening during puberty that, when absent, will leave hairs without MPB
» problems even when they genetically should have them.

Thanks Cal. I was also asking about the period before the Follica treatment is initiated. Would it make sense for folks who have not used Propecia or other DHT blockers in the past to do so in an attempt to “protect” existing follicles? If you were thinning on the top of your head and elected to undergo the Follica treatment, I guess you would shave the thinning hair, wound the scalp, etc., with the expectation that the entire area would grow new, thick hair.


#7

That link is the kinds of comments that I don’t really trust/believe.

– It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to refute the relevance of the fact that transplanted hair survives, for example. (Is the safe/donor zone principle lost on them? Scary if they really think it’s that simple and they’re not just trying to BS an uninformed interviewer here.)

– I can’t pull the link off the top of my head, but I think it has been demonstrated that hairs are capable of some miniaturization WITHIN one cycle. Another point bites the dust, at least in raw theory although maybe not in most real world cases.

– Circulating levels of DHT indeed drop over time, but I think they’re still high as hell until your early 30s. Many of us started balding years before then.

– “Changes the microenvironment” . . . WTF? That particular quote sounds like a heap of plain old bullsh*tting to me.

This stuff is what I’m talking about with Folica and DHT resistance. I don’t hear much cold hard logic coming from them as to why I should believe the hairs will have any better DHT resistance than the originals did. Just a bunch of vague “trust us, it’ll probably work” generalizations.

Honestly I still think we’ll probably get DHT-resistant hairs. At least DHT resistant enough. Any guy who naturally makes it to age 30yo without being a visible NW#6-7 probably won’t have to redo this Folica method more than a couple of times before they reach retirement age. At worst, the really badly susceptibile might have to redo it every 3-5 years (once per hair cycle) in their teens/20s, and then maybe once a decade until they’re well into middle age. But that’s a very worst-case scenario as far as I’m concerned. I still think it’s pretty likely that the hairs could last at least a couple of decades.

I’m relatively sure we’ll be able to keep the hairs in the big picture. But I’m not reassured by the reasonings that Folica itself has said about this issue.


#8

If it works out that you have to re do it every so often and it’s safe to do, i’d be happy with that.


#9

I don’t think we do know that the Follica treatment won’t cause shock fallout. I had huge shock fallout from an HT session in areas nowhere near the site of the procedure.

The mechanism for shock fallout isn’t fully understood. It isn’t just because of transection or other physical interference.


#10

I’m not gonna sit here and insist that you’re wrong about that (the Folica risk of it), but IMO it’s very unlikely.

We shouldn’t ever forget that Folica’s basic wounding and regrowth, and the basics of the medication assistance to it . . . it’s already pretty safe to say this stuff can work just based on the sporadic real world examples of it occurring.