Acute Telogen Effluvium, no obvious cause

Discussions about the diffuse thinning experienced by women, usually after menopause
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Desert Rose
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Feb 28, 2016 10:22 am

Acute Telogen Effluvium, no obvious cause

Post by Desert Rose »

Hello, hoping for urgent advice please, if Tom/ others on the forum could help would be greatly appreciated! Can anyone advise or suggest what is causing my very heavy daily hair loss, and how to stop it?? My daily hair loss since around 1st Jan 2016 (8 weeks) has been extreme, I try not to count as it nears 200 hairs. My scalp is very visible now and I am so depressed. I had higher than normal hair loss that started in March 2015, and after getting my blood checked, I improved my diet and supplemented to increase ferritin, Vit D and zinc. By August 2015, my ferritin was 90, Vit D near 80 and zinc normal. All other tests have always been in normal range - TSH, male/ female hormones, copper, cortisol in normal range by a little low side, blood pressure is normal but on low side (110/70), resting heart rate is normal or on low side (58 bpm), no family history of women losing hair like this. My blood tests were done by endocrinologist and gynaecologist and all except male/female hormones were updated 2 weeks ago (still normal). I eat quite a good diet, red meat moderate amounts, fish, vegetables, fruits, grains, fats and oils from natural sources, I don't take birth control pills, weight is stable for last 15 years (54 kg), I sleep 7-8 hrs each night, I have ongoing work and relationship stress but not ridiculously high. I exercise 1 - 2 times a week. No exposure to toxins and I don't drink alcohol or smoke. A trichologist said it is diffuse and not female pattern hair loss, it is acute TE but he couldn't identify the cause. I had a simple ovarian cyst removed in August 2015 under general anaesthetic (1 hr 50 min laproscopic surgery), but didn't experience loss after 3 or 4 months, and feel that the loss that started in January is unrelated due to time gap and also that the heavy shedding is still going strong after 8 weeks. I stopped adding salt to my meals as a new year's resolution, this is only change I made to my life at the same time as the acute hair fall start date. In October (ie 2 - 3 months before as a possible trigger), I had to find a new nanny and that was stressful, but not extreme. Please, please can anyone offer any advice, I am going bald in a matter of weeks!
Tom Hagerty
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Posts: 629
Joined: Mon Dec 06, 2010 9:21 am

Re: Acute Telogen Effluvium, no obvious cause

Post by Tom Hagerty »

Your health habits are OK - diet and exercise - and so are your lab reports. But you're losing lots of hair. Sometimes general anesthesia is the cause for telogen effluvium, but your surgery was for less than two hours and it is not considered a major surgery.

Now that your serum ferritin is 90 ng/ml, you might consider halting your supplementary iron. You can find articles on Google about the danger of too much iron in your system. Also a little salt is needed but you probably get enough if you eat processed foods. I use only sea salt and I take a kelp tablet every day for the iodine.

It doesn't sound like you are overly stressed. Prolonged psychological stress can trigger hair loss, but that does not seem like your problem at all.

I wish I had some suggestions which might help you. I don't. You are doing everything that you can do.
Desert Rose
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Feb 28, 2016 10:22 am

Re: Acute Telogen Effluvium, no obvious cause

Post by Desert Rose »

Thanks for the reply Tom...

That's my same conclusion, nothing obviously wrong but I"m losing huge amount of hair a day, I can't figure it out.

If anyone else has any suggestions or advice, greatly appreciated. I look 20 years older in the space of 2 months, its hard to accept.
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