FDA Approves 2 New Female Hair Loss Treatments

The FDA has lifted its hold on the clinical trial testing of the drug CTP-543. The drug is currently being studied by Concert Pharmaceuticals Inc to treat alopecia areata.

Alopecia areata is just one of the many types of hair loss 21 million American women experience on a daily basis. The condition is an autoimmune disorder that causes the patient’s immune system to attack and eradicate the hair follicles.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration had initially placed a hold on the clinical trials in May 2017. Concert Pharmaceuticals insists the FDA showed no signs of concern regarding CTP-543. Rather, the FDA had asked for more information regarding the drug’s data before the pharmaceutical company could proceed with trial testing.

According to Reuters, Concert plans to enroll approximately 90 patients in an upcoming trial. Each patient suffering from moderate to severe alopecia areata, will receive either a placebo, 4 mg of CTP-543, or 8 mg of CTP-543 over the course of 24 weeks. The study is expected to be completed by 2018.

Hair loss is particularly detrimental to a woman’s self-esteem. Up to 38% of American women alter their hairstyle in order to feel more confident. Therefore, when hair begins to thin or fall out, for some women it can be compared to losing a limb.

Fortunately, for those whose hair loss is caused by chemotherapy rather than alopecia areata, the FDA has also cleared the use of a new cooling cap to reverse hair loss.

“We are pleased to expand the use of this product for cancer patients with solid tumors to potentially minimize chemotherapy-induced hair loss,” said Binita Ashar, M.D., in an FDA news release. “Managing the side effects of chemotherapy is a critical component to overall health and quality of life.”

Chemotherapy causes hair loss because the chemicals attack any rapidly growing cells in the body. Unfortunately, hair follicle are considered rapidly growing cells.

The new cooling cap, called the Dignicap, had previously been used only for breast cancer patients, but with the FDA’s approval, the cap can now be used by other cancer patients. The cap works by cooling the scalp either before, during, or after chemotherapy treatment.

By cooling the scalp, the growth rate of the hair follicles slows, allowing for the chemical treatment to attack only the tumors. According to WXII News 12, cancer patients kept at least 50% of their hair during clinical trials of the Dignicap.

The use of the Dignicap is great for those patients looking to reduce their risk of hair loss during chemotherapy treatment.

No matter the cause, women will soon have exciting new options for treating their hair loss. One day, they may even be able to reverse it entirely.

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