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MPB "may be cured by injecting epilepsy drug into scalp"


#1

https://www.newscientist.com/article/2164511-male-balding-may-be-cured-by-injecting-epilepsy-drug-into-scalp/


#2

It doesnt allow to read the full article, but this video gives a little more info.


#3

Thanks for that. The good thing about this is that Valproic Acid is already FDA approved, and it’s legal for doctors to prescribe it off-label, for indications other than epilepsy. So, they could conceivably prescribe it for hair loss.

Also, the side effects don’t look too bad. There is nothing like cancer on this list. And presumably, injecting it into the scalp, rather than taking it as a pill, or having it injected into a vein, would not expose you to severe side effects.

The potential downside is, how many scalp injections do you need to start growing hair? How frequent do the injections have to be? If you stop the injections, will the follicles miniaturize again, and in how long? Can hair grown with valproic acid be maintained using other drugs?


#4

I wonder why it has to be injected and not applied as solution or ointment?
Also, there are conflicting reports about valproic acid effect on hair. Some of the reports actually state that VA causes hair loss.


#5

Good question , @Otter. According to this article, up to 28% of patients who take valproic acid internally get hair loss, and it seems to be more common in women than men. The article says it is dose related telogen effluvium – basically the VA causes shedding.

Just an idea, but this might be related to a speed-up in the hair cycle. If the hair cycle speeds up, the first thing you’ll notice is shedding, as many anagen hairs go into catagen and telogen phases.


#6

Could it be that valproic acid, same like minoxidil, only converts more existing hairs from telogen and catagen phase into anagen phase. Therefore we see more hairs at one given time. But it does not stop hair follicle “destruction” process, nor it reverses hair loss in any way.
Only assumption.


#8

I think you’re right, @Otter… But the question is, is it strong enough to work even on miniaturized follicles, or does it only work on healthy follicles in resting phase? Remember, it’s only a matter of degree – minitaturized follicles are locked into an extended resting phase.