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#87815 - 05/26/11 04:57 PM Spironolactone *
Pizzahut Offline
Member

Registered: 04/06/11
Posts: 2
Hi there,

I've been struggling with some facial hair since my early 20's (now 28) and some light acne. After some hormone tests which showed borderline testosterone levels, my derm is prescribing me to spironolactone which I am really looking forward to taking! I hope it helps manage my problems.

My question is how should I treat my facial hair going forward? I have stopped plucking awhile back after hearing that it promotes hair growth, but don't know how to proceed. My doc said it will hopefully stop/slow growth.

Anyone have any experience or ideas?

Thanks!

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#87820 - 05/26/11 06:43 PM Re: Spironolactone [Re: Pizzahut]
LAgirl Offline

Top 10 Contributor

Registered: 12/22/04
Posts: 9994
Loc: New York, NY
The drug may prevent new growth. But you need to get electrolysis for the current growth that's already there.

You can shave also without long term impact of any kind.

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#87823 - 05/26/11 08:03 PM Re: Spironolactone [Re: LAgirl]
JMISR Offline
Top 20 Contributor

Registered: 12/11/10
Posts: 254
Loc: Seattle, USA
It's better to exhaust permanent methods (in your case, electrolysis) before starting anti-androgenic therapy.
It can take months to a year to see any benefit from these medications, and by that time you could really get things under control with electrolysis.

As mentioned, it won't help with the hair you already have. Also, any benefit obtained from the medication goes away upon discontinuing the medication. If it were me (I'm an MD PhD), I wouldn't want to be on this for the rest of my life if it wasn't 100% necessary.

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#88309 - 06/06/11 02:13 PM Re: Spironolactone [Re: JMISR]
Pizzahut Offline
Member

Registered: 04/06/11
Posts: 2
Thank you. I am on the meds for a host of reasons, not just for hair growth so I am not likely to go off. But I do appreciate the info!

BS

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#100700 - 08/19/12 01:24 PM Re: Spironolactone [Re: Pizzahut]
WeRNotAfraid Offline
Top 10 Contributor

Registered: 07/28/02
Posts: 387
Loc: Dallas
I have to disagree with others in that yes, anti-androgens WILL reduce the amount of hair you have and lessen the amount of electrolysis needed. Since I started anti-androgens my body hair thinned out significantly, and if I had started electrolysis first I would have spend much, much more time and money. The hair that remains is finer, lighter, and easier to remove.

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#100702 - 08/19/12 04:53 PM Re: Spironolactone [Re: WeRNotAfraid]
James W. Walker VII Offline

Top 10 Contributor

Registered: 06/03/02
Posts: 8049
Loc: Buffalo NY, & Traveling the US...
While I HAVE seen anti-androgens reduce the number of hairs one has on the body, I have not seen them reduce the number of facial hairs my clients have had. They MAY reduce the thickness of those hairs, but not the number of hairs.

When I work a full body job on a TG, we concentrate on the face, and try to make sure the area around the areolas are clear, so that we don't have to work that area when the breast development makes them super sensitive. Sometimes, the chest hair retreats and we don't need to go back to it, other times, we need to work the remaining hairs so that we have a smooth female chest after the pharmaceuticals have done their thing.
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#100705 - 08/19/12 09:00 PM Re: Spironolactone [Re: James W. Walker VII]
Barbara_CPE Offline

Top 10 Contributor

Registered: 10/19/05
Posts: 1102
Loc: Kansas
Agreeing with James. Something causes the hair diameter (for some) to decrease. Often that's enough to make you think that there is less hair (less hair weight, perhaps?).

Retreat is a good word to use for this. I have noticed a "reduction" of hair (diameter, not in number) after the client has begun spironolactone.
_________________________
Barbara Greathouse, CPE
Kansas Licensed since 1980
Live by the 4 Agreements: Be impeccable with your word. Don't take anything personally. Don't make assumptions. Always do your best.



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#100711 - 08/20/12 07:17 AM Re: Spironolactone [Re: Barbara_CPE]
mumbaigirl Offline
Top 20 Contributor

Registered: 12/14/11
Posts: 281
I'm on spironolactone since a year and have noticed about 30% reduction in THICKNESS of body hair but NOT in number. Of course, I have no way to accurately measure. Many people experience reduction in number of body hair but that is usually after several years of being on spironolactone/HRT. I guess the hair just becomes vellus and unnoticeable but doesn't really get killed - the way it gets killed from laser and electrolysis.

The rate of facial hair growth slowed down pretty fast: within 3 months of starting spironolactone. I couldn't see notice any significant reduction in thickness and number though. I might have seen some reduction had I waited for longer and not started laser. I started laser in about 5 months of starting spironolactone.

Strange thing: I haven't waxed or shaved or used any other form of hair removal on my body hair since I started hormones as I'm prone to folliculitis and YET, I see significant reduction in thickness. And I have pictures to prove. I wonder how a fully grown thick hair can become thin (without being plucked/shaved and starting out afresh from the follicle). Does it shed keratin? (LOL) Or is it the cycles? *wonders*

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#100712 - 08/20/12 01:32 PM Re: Spironolactone [Re: mumbaigirl]
WeRNotAfraid Offline
Top 10 Contributor

Registered: 07/28/02
Posts: 387
Loc: Dallas
I've noticed both a reduction in hair thickness and in hair count; some places that used to have hair are now totally hairless or else have tiny, tiny little vellus hairs. I also noticed that anti-androgens reduced my facial hair slightly and radically cut down on the regrowth (my face has been cleared now for years.) I definitely think they can help improve appearance by themselves; the popular claim that they only prevent new growth and do nothing for existing hair is not true.

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#100723 - 08/21/12 05:44 AM Re: Spironolactone [Re: WeRNotAfraid]
mumbaigirl Offline
Top 20 Contributor

Registered: 12/14/11
Posts: 281
That's good to hear. smile

Can you please tell me how much reduction(of course, approximately) you have noticed in hair count area-wise?

Also, how long did it take for you to achieve this reduction on hormones?


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