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Medication & Drugs that Caused Hair Loss

Definition of drug-induced hair loss

Doctors prescribe medications to treat certain medical illnesses. Often, the introduction of a new medicine can result in the side effect of hair loss. Not only is managing symptoms associated with the disease a tedious process, but the side effects warrant another layer of analysis.

In some cases, the medication is necessary to help you treat a life-threatening illness. In contrast, you may be able to switch drugs to alleviate the associated hair loss. If you’ve recently started taking a new medication and have noticed excessive hair shedding upwards for 200+ strands a day, it’s a good idea to discuss your options with your health care team.

What medications causes hair loss?

The most common medications known to cause hair loss are:

● Chemotherapy drugs
● Blood thinners or anti-clotting drugs
● Antibiotics
● Cholesterol drugs
● Birth Control
● Thyroid medications
● Steroids
● Blood pressure medicine including beta-blockers, diuretics, and ACE inhibitors
● Antidepressants and mood stabilizers
● Weight loss drugs
● Breast cancer medications
● Immune system suppressants
● Migraine medication
● Retinoids


Certain drugs can cause a reaction of hair loss, with the most immediate signs being excessive shedding or a change in the color or texture of your hair. Depending on the medication you are taking and the dosage, you may notice symptoms within 1-week to 2-4 months.


To diagnose hair loss, your doctor will look at your medical history, genetics, and overall health. If you suspect that a new medication is the cause of your hair loss, evaluate any changes in your routine, and bring your concerns to your doctor. Did you start taking a new medicine, get on/off birth control, introduce a new supplement to your diet, or do anything different than the norm? Your doctor will diagnosis the issue based on these findings and provide the safest options or alternatives.


While certain medications are known to cause hair loss, it doesn’t mean they cause hair loss for every woman, which makes prevention tricky. You won’t know if you will have an adverse reaction until you start taking the medication. What you can do is be mindful of how your body reacts to the new drug. Work closely with your doctor to find the right medication, and if hair loss occurs, do not cease medication immediately as it can interfere with your health. Instead, consult with your doctor about transitioning to a different drug.

There may not be a medication alternative, in which case your life and livelihood are dependent on the medication you are on. If hair loss is unavoidable, consider the following treatment options to give you peace of mind and confidence during this difficult time.


Finding the right medication can be a discouraging and emotional process. Remember that the body is a complex and sophisticated machine, and although prescribed medications should help you, side effects can cause emotional and physical distress. The critical thing to keep at the forefront of your healing journey is that your health is the most vital issue at hand.

If you’re able to transition to a new medication to manage your medical illness, the natural hair growth cycle will resume. In the meantime, Daniel Alain has practical solutions to help you feel confident, empowered, and reclaim your self-esteem.

Managing hair loss is emotionally distressing, as is finding the right medication for your body. That’s why sometimes it helps to add a little assistance to your hair health with cosmetic solutions. Depending on where you are at in your hair loss journey, you can use a root boosting complex to add body and volume to your hair. If you’ve lost a significant amount of hair, a Topette or wig is a great temporary solution while your hair regrows.