Telogen Effluvium (TE): Patient Stories Teach A Great Deal

Patient Stories Teach A Great Deal

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Telogen effluvium (“TE”) refers to a type of hair loss whereby the affected individual notices more hair being shed from the scalp on a daily basis than he or she normally would have.

For example, an individual who might have once lost 35 hairs per day might now lose 75; an individual who once lost 50-60 hairs per day might now lose over 200. Telogen effluvium can be associated with either minor shedding or major shedding. Some more severe effluviums can give 400-700 hairs lost on a given day.

If one listens carefully to a patient’s hair loss story, it becomes clearer as to just how severe of a shed they are having. A patient who finds more hair in their brush or more hair in their hand after a shower might be having a mild TE. A patient who sees dozens of hairs on their pillow when they wake up in the morning or who sees hair in their food at dinner time, is likely having a more severe TE. 

Common causes of telogen effluvium include low ferritin (iron levels), thyroid abnormalities, poor diets, weight loss and crash diets, stress and some type of medications. A variety of illnesses in the body can also trigger shedding.

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

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