Hair Loss and Hair Transplantation Glossary
Hair: Hair root (live hair follicle cells) and hair shaft (dead keratin body).
Hair follicle: A saclile structure just below the surface of scalp. The sheat within which hair grows.
Hair shaft: Filament projecting from the surface of the scalp that provides protection and warmth (hair).
Keratin: A tough, fibrous, insoluble protein forming hair and finger nails.
Hair transplantation = Hair restoration: Transfer of hair follicle cells.
Recipient site: Bald area which hair grafts are transplanted.
Donor site: Area where pieces of hair-bearing skin are taken from during a hair transplant.
Donor dominance: Scientific basis for hair transplantation stating that hair’s genetic code resides within the hair follicle and not in the recipient site into which it is transplanted.
Alopecia: Loss of hair as a result of illness, functional disorder, or hereditary disposition. The medical term for hair loss.
Androgenetic Alopecia: Hair loss resulting from a genetic predisposition to effects of DHT on the hair follicles. Also termed female pattern baldness and male pattern baldness, male pattern baldness, hereditary alopecia and common baldness.
Scarring Alopecia: Patchy hair loss with obvious sign of scalp inflammation.
Alopecia Areata: A disease that causes the body to form antibodies against some hair follicles. It can result from such factors as stress, genetics and the immune system. Alopecia Areata causes sudden smooth, circular patches of hair loss.
Male Pattern Baldness (MPB): The most common type of hair loss that is caused by hormones, genes and age, and is usually progressive in nature. It affects the central and frontal area of the scalp and often results in a pronounced U-Shape configuration.
Norwood Scale or Classification: A scale for the classification of hair loss in men.
Female Pattern Baldness (FPB): Progressive thinning of hair throughout the entire head caused by genes, age and hormones. It usually develops at a much slower rate than male pattern baldness.
Ludwig Scale or Classification: A scale for the classification of hair loss in women.
Hormonal: Pertaining to hormones. Hormones are chemical messengers that are usually carried by the bloodstream. They exert their effects on specific target organs.
Androgen: General term referring to any male hormone. The major androgen is testosterone.
Testosterone: The male hormone which is released by both the adrenal gland and the testicles, promotes the development of male characteristics.
Dihydrotestosterone (DHT): A male hormone that is suggested to be the main cause for the miniaturisation of the hair follicle and for hair loss. DHT is formed when the male hormone testosterone interacts with the enzyme 5-alpha reductase.
5-Alpha-Reductase: The chemical that is responsible for transforming testosterone into dihydrotestosterone.
5-Alpha-Reductase Inhibitors: Prevent the body from converting testosterone to DHT by blocking the action of the enzyme 5-alpha reductase.
Anagen: The growing phase of hair, usually lasting between one and seven years.
Telogen: The resting phase of the hair cycle which usually lasts approximately three months.
Catagen: The intermittent stage between the growing ( anagen ) and resting ( telogen ) phases of the hair’s growth cycle.
Anagen Effluvium: Loss of hair that is supposed to be in the anagen or growing phase. This is the type of hair loss that is associated with chemotherapy or radiation treatment.
Telogen Effluvium: The second most common form of hair loss (androgenetic alopecia is the first). A condition that causes an increased number of hairs to enter the telogen, or resting phase. The additional shedding usually occurs in response to various stresses such as emotional trauma, post-pregnancy and illness, major surgery, certain medications. Telogen effluvium can be delayed (occurring a few months after the stressful incident) or chronic (unresolved).
Telogen Loss: Loss of hair during resting phase of hair or “natural” loss.
Follicular Unit: Natural groupings of hair that grow together as a group in the scalp and share the same blood supply.
FUT “Follicular Unit Transplantation”: A technique of hair transplantation in which the surgeon harvests hair in naturally occurring follicular units and grafts them to balding sections of the scalp.
FUE “Follicular Unit Extraction”: An advanced form of the follicular unit transplant where follicular units are removed individually from the donor area.
MikroFUE (Mikro Follicular Unit Extraction): An advanced and accurate application of FUE technique. The modern technique that is currently used by the best hair transplantation clinics and centers.
Grafting: A variety of procedures describing the removal of hair bearing scalp from the back of the head to a recipient site. The most widely used types of grafting are slit grafts, micrografting and minigrafting.
Grafts: Transplanted hair.
Minigraft: A small hair graft consisting of three to eight follicles each in FUT or FUE technique.
Micrograft: A very small hair graft consisting of one or two hairs in MikroFUE technique.
Hair Cloning: Currently not available, but cloning hair may make it possible for you to have an unlimited crop of donor hair for a hair transplant.
Hair Weaving: A process by which a hair piece (synthetic or human hair) is attached to existing hair on scalp through braiding or another interweaving process.
Topically: Directly applied on the skin.
Minoxidil: A prescription medication taken orally for the treatment of high blood pressure and used topically to retard hair loss and/ or encourage hair growth. Generic name for Rogaine.
Rogaine: The brand name for minoxidil topical hair growth solution, available over the counter in 2% solution and 5% extra strength solution.
Finasteride: The generic name of the brand name drug Proscar. Proscar is manufactured by Merck and is FDA approved for the treatment of benign prostate enlargement. 1mg tablets of finasteride have been marketed under the brand name Propecia as a treatment for hair loss. It is an antiandrogen that blocks the formation of dihydrotestosterone by inhibiting the enzyme 5 alpha-reductase.
Propecia: The brand name for 1 mg dose of finasteride, approved for the prevention and treatment of male pattern baldness.
Proscar: Finasteride as an FDA approved treatment for BPH.