Minoxidil Patient Handout
1. What is this medicine and what is it used for?
This medicine contains: minoxidil (the active ingredient in Rogaine) which acts on the scalp to help stimulate hairs to return to the growth phase. It can be used for a variety of types of hair loss, including pattern baldness, telogen effluvium, CCCA and others.
2. How to use this medicine.
This medicine is for use on the scalp only. Do not apply it to other areas of the body. Make sure that the scalp is clean and dry before applying. Minoxidil can be applied once or twice a day.
If you use your fingertips to rub the solution into your scalp, make sure that you wash your hands afterwards.
4. How long does it take to see results?
The hair may take up to 6 months to see significant improvement / growth, and in some people may not grow at all. The new hair may be fine hair, similar to baby hair. This medicine is a treatment (not a cure) and needs to be continued for hair growth to be maintained. If you stop the treatment, the new hair will return to the pretreatment state in about 3 to 4 months
5. FEMALE: Why does the prescription contain Metformin and/or Spironolactone?
There have been reports of hair regrowth after 4 months of use of topical metformin. No systemic adverse effects were reported with topical use of Metformin.
Spironolactone works for hair loss by inhibiting an enzyme that helps make testosterone. In a study of 60 female patients with hair loss, topical spironolactone 1% was found to be effective in promoting hair growth. Spironolactone does have a strong chemical odor. If strong smells bother you, we can write your prescription without the spironolactone.
6. Common side effects
The most common side effect is itching and irritation of the scalp, at sites of application of the medication.
Another side effect is initial shedding of the hair in the first few weeks of using the medication. If you discontinue the minoxidil, the results will not be maintained, but your hair will NOT fall out more or worse than without using the medication at all.
7. Other side effects
There are many other possible, but less common side effects of topical minoxidil.