Consumer Education

HairSite
in collaboration with
Dr. Pickart
brings you
Female Hair Loss Treatment using Copper Peptide

SUBJECT

  • Dr. Pickart on Female Hair Loss
   

SOURCE

  • Dr. Loren Pickart, Skin Biology, Inc.
 

SPONSORS

Hair Regrowth for Women  - from Skin Biology


Women with hair loss or various hair conditions may benefit from copper peptides treatments. Copper Peptides aids hair health by helping the scalp tissue repair itself (such as with seborrheic dermatitis or damage from harsh chemicals, sunburn, and hair dryers).

  • Best in age 40 to 70 group
  • Hair shedding often stops within one month
  • Hair shafts are often thicker
  • Some report strong hair re-growth
  • Often reduces itching and flaking associated with scalp inflammation

Dr. Pickart and Skin Biology's recommendations, based on 20 years of successful research on skin and hair and feedback from many women with hair loss, are:

1. Start with skin repair/hair growth copper peptides

Copper ion complexed with certain peptides has both skin repair and hair growth enhancement effects. Examples of this are Folligen (from Skin Biology) and Tricomin and GraftCyte (from ProCyte Corporation). The Proctor Gamble Company has patented as hair growth compounds a number of copper complexes with peptides such His-Gly-Gly and similar compounds. In women, hair loss is often associated with scalp irritation or inflammation. Folligen skin repair properties rapidly restore scalp health.

The copper-peptide concept is based on Iamin, the human body's natural trigger of tissue renewal (see Copper Peptide Regeneration.)  Dr. Pickart invented the copper peptide that produced Tricomin and GraftCyte while at ProCyte Corporation, which sells the latter two products. Both GraftCyte for improving the establishment of hair transplants, and Tricomin for stimulating hair growth, have demonstrated efficacy clinical studies.

Copper-peptides possess significant anti-inflammatory actions which may reduce Alopecia Areata which is one of the major causes of hair loss in women and generally appears as patchy loss. Although mild erythema may occur initially, affected areas of scalp or skin appear normal. This may be anywhere on the scalp or even the rest of the body.

Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disease but without the normal hormonal component in pattern loss. In simple terms, white blood cells attack the hair roots resulting in loss of hair. About 30% of individuals with this problem are aware of a relative with this disorder; thus, there seems also to be a genetic component. There are no good medical treatments.  A variety of approaches are currently used for treatment; all are aimed at interrupting the "attack" of white blood cells upon the hair roots. The major therapies include topical and locally injected corticosteroids ; topical minoxidil along with anthralin; various topical irritants or sensitizers; special light treatments (called PUVA); and a number of experimental drugs which alter the immune system.

It cannot be accurately predicted when the condition may become occur. An episode might be precipitated during a illness or a physiologic stress. This type of hair loss may recur at any time. New patches of hair loss can develop while older patches are being effectively treated. Sometimes hair will regrow spontaneously over a period of months to years - this is less likely with more extensive hair loss.

2. For more hair growth add in Minoxidil (2% or 5%)

For more hair stimulation, add in 2% Minoxidil. This can be progressively increased to 5% Minoxidil. Sometimes minoxidil produces scalp irritation. If this happens, stop the minoxidil and use only Folligen until your scalp health is restored. Then reuse the 2% minoxidil and the 5% minoxidil if your scalp remains healthy.

3. Retinoic Acid (useful range 0.01 to 0.05%)
Retinoic Acid may help but some women question this. Retinoic acid (Retin-A) is also recommended by mnay dermatologists for improving hair growth. However, many women have indicated that they associated their hair loss with the use of retinoids ranging from retinoic acid (retin-A) to Accutane.

If retinoic acid is used, the major drawback is often strong scalp irritation. Folligen, used lightly, can greatly reduce this irritation. Sometimes, the combination of minoxidil and retinoic acid causes breaks in the skin barrier.

4. The addition of estrogen or a DHT blocker may help in some cases

Estrogens, the feminizing hormones, can inhibit or counteract the follicle-shrinking effect of the androgens. Women have more estrogens circulating in their blood than men. As a result of this higher level of estrogens, even women having a genetic predisposition for pattern hair loss are protected from losing their hair because of the high level of estrogens in their blood. When these women reach menopause however, their estrogen level may decrease  sufficiently, and the protective effect of the estrogen may be overridden by the DHT message. Then hair can begin to thin, sometimes rapidly. Some women who are genetically pre-disposed to have pattern hair loss.

This type of hair loss or Androgenetic Alopecia or pattern baldness affects over 70% of men but also 15% of women where the hair loss pattern tends to be diffuse and over a broader area. Women usually do not develop bald spots, but rather have overall thinning hair. In such diffuse hair loss in women, over 50% of the hair can be lost before the results are readily apparent.

Estrogen supplementation can raise estrogen levels, and help restore the emotional and physical condition of the patient to the pre-menopause states. It may also slow or stop hair loss triggered by menopause. While hormone replacement therapy has been a controversial treatment for menopause, newer methods are finding overall reductions both in the risk of some cancers and in the risk of heart diseases.

The best known DHT (dihydrotestosterone) blocker is PropeciaŽ, the drug from Merck, but Merck does not recommend Propecia for women: a one year study of hair growth in 136 post-menopausal women found no significant effect of Propecia on hair growth.

Non-drug DHT Blockers include saw palmetto oil,  pygeum and nettle root extract,  the soybean isoflavones genistein and daidzien, and ginkgo biloba.

Saw palmetto has been used for over 400 years as a herbal treatment for enuresis, nocturia, atrophy of the testes, impotence, inflammation of the prostate, and as a mild aphrodisiac for men. Women used the berries to treat infertility, painful periods and problems with lactation.

Extracts of two plants, pygeum bark (Pygeum africanum) and nettle root (Urtica dioica) are widely used for the treatment of prostate hyperplasia.

Isoflavonoids, such as genistein and daidzein are weak estrogens and may lessen the risk of osteoporosis and heart disease. Several studies have found a protective effect of isoflavones against the development of cancer.  The Chinese report that daidzien exhibits hair growth and hair color promoting activity. Some Folligen users have reported good hair regrowth when combined with oral intake of bioflavinoids.

Ginkgo biloba is a popular herb used world wide to improve cerebral blood flow and general blood circulation. It was recently reported by the Journal of the American Medical Association to slow the progression of Alzheimer's disease. It has been reported to inhibit 5-alpha reductase activity.

5. High level exercise training may cause hair loss

In women, severe exercise tends to reduce estrogen and raise testosterone. This can lead to a stopping of the menstrual cycle and more brittle bones. While there are many positive aspects of exercise training, this effect on hair should be kept in mind since it can increase the rate of hair loss.

6. Sudden hormone shifts can cause hair loss

In women hair loss can become severe after giving birth to a child or after discontinuation of oral contraceptives (birth control pills). The In these cases, a brief therapy with hair stimulators can usually restore hair to its previous condition.
 

One of the most sought after copper peptides based topical hair treatment is Folligen. Folligen is a non-drug product designed by Dr. Loren Pickart to improve scalp and hair follicle health and hair vitality. Dr. Loren Pickart is the inventor of many clinically-proven products for the hair and scalp health such as products for hair transplantation sold as the GraftCyteŽ Advanced Hair Restoration Technology for improving the success of  hair transplants consisting of: GraftCyteŽ Moist Dressings, GraftCyteŽ Hydrating Mist, GraftCyteŽ Post-Surgical Shampoo & Conditioner, and GraftCyteŽ Head Start Single Patient Pack. Other inventions produced the TricominŽ system for treatment of thinning hair consisting of the TricominŽ Solution Follicle Therapy Spray, TricominŽ Revitalizing Shampoo, TricominŽ Restructuring Conditioner and TricominŽ Conditioning Shampoo.

Advising Skin Biology on hair growth methods is Prof. Hideo Uno, one the the world's leading researchers on hair growth. Dr. Uno conducted much of the early work on Rogaine (minoxidil) and wrote the standard monograph on Rogaine that was distributed by Upjohn Pharmaceuticals.

Folligen had its beginning as a skin repair cream that was being tested in the Dermatology Department at the University of California at San Francisco.  A 41-year-old woman with severe hair loss tried one of Dr. Pickart's skin repair creams because nothing else had worked to restore her lost hair. In two and one/half months she regained all her lost hair. Other people began using our skin repair cream to counter hair loss and. in time, Folligen emerged as a distinct product.

Folligen's biological effect on hair is similar to other copper-peptide products such as Graftcyte and Tricomin which are skin repair products that aid hair growth and scalp health.

Folligen is sold in three versions: (1) Folligen Cream which that works well on hairlines, (2) a more-liquid Folligen Lotion for using in areas of denser hair, and (3) Folligen Solution Therapy Spray which can be sprayed as a fine mist into the hair.

Folligen is especially useful in helping to reduce scalp irritation caused by other hair growth products such as RogaineŽ (minoxidil), Retin-AŽ (retinoic acid) and PropeciaŽ. Compare Folligen Cream or Folligen Lotion at $18.95 and Folligen Solution Therapy Spray for $33.95 to Tricomin Solution Follicle Therapy SprayŽ sold by ProCyte for $48.00 and GraftCyte SolutionŽ for $125.00 which are products based on Dr. Pickart's earlier hair health inventions.

All Folligen products contain a high concentration of blue-colored copper-peptide complexes and do not contain any blue dyes or scalp damaging detergents or alcohol. Tricomin contains blue dyes apparently to give the impression of more copper-peptide complexes. Folligen Solution Therapy Spray uses small amounts of polysorbate 20 and propylene glycol to enhance the uptake of copper-peptide around the hair follicle.

Application of Folligen: 

Step 1:  Use Folligen Lotion, Cream or Spray to get your scalp in good shape. Apply a thin coating of Folligen cream or lotion or Folligen Spray to the scalp. The Cream is better for the hairline and the Lotion and Spray are easier to apply into heavier hair. Folligen is usually applied before bedtime. If desired, you may shampoo the Folligen out in the morning. Then start using 2% minoxidil along with Folligen. If this is not irritating, move up to Folligen and 5% minoxidil.

Apply the minoxidil and let it dry for about a minute, then apply the Folligen.

Step 2. If your scalp become irritated stop the minoxidil but continue Folligen. When your scalp is OK again, resume the progressive use of minoxidil and start again with 2% and move up to 5%.

After a number of cycles of steps 1 and 2, your skin should adjust and you should be able to use both together.

While this 2-Step System works very well, many say that Folligen alone has sufficiently solved their hair problems.


Folligen is a marked improvement over Pickart's previous inventions for hair growth stimulation. Three US Patents 5,382,431; 5,554,375; 5,698,184 have issued on this technology which strongly assists skin renewal and hair follicle regeneration.

 

Dr. Pickart via HairSite Editorial
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