Is Early Onset Androgenetic Alopecia Increasing in Males?
Early onset balding is important to recognize and important to understand all the health issues surrounding it. I define early onset male balding as a form of androgenetic alopecia happening before age 30. Men with early balding have an increased risk of high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and metabolic syndrome later in life - so proper counselling is essential for these males.
Is the incidence of male balding increasing?
I am often asked if more young men are balding nowadays. I was interested to read results of a survey of 41 dermatologists whereby 88% felt there indeed was an increase in incidence of AGA in men younger than 30 years.
I was also interested to read a theory by Goren and colleagues as to why more and more young men might be experiencing balding. The argument was that there are increasing social pressures for women to conceive later in life and women who are actually able to conceive in their late 30s and 40s may have genetics that leads them to have a lower risk for premature ovarian failure, higher antral follicle counts in the ovary and ovulation at a later age. These same genetics (ie the length of the CAG repeat on the androgen receptor gene) is associated with increased balding in their male children.
More study is needed of this interesting hypothesis.
Goren A et al. Social selection favours offspring prone to the development of androgenetic alopecia. J Biol Regul Homeost Agents. 2017 Oct-Dec;31(4):1013-1016.
Dr. Jeff Donovan is a Canadian and US board certified dermatologist specializing exclusively in hair loss. To schedule a consultation, please call the Whistler office at 604.283.1887