British Skin Foundation - Hair Loss/Alopecia

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Can having a major operation cause hair loss?

Postby Guest Posts on Thu Aug 16, 2018 9:10 am

Is it true that having a major operation can cause hair loss?
I had nissen fundoplication surgery in April and for the last 6 weeks I've been losing a phenomenal amount of hair. Clogging the shower up and loads when I brush it. My hair is now looking very thin.
Thank you
Karen
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Re: Can having a major operation cause hair loss?

Postby Dr Kapil Bhargava on Thu Aug 16, 2018 11:43 am

Dear Karen,

Having a operation can lead to hair loss. The condition is known as a telogen effluvium. At any one point in time upto about 10% of scalp hairs are in the shedding phase, known as telogen. An operation is one form of physical stress that can disrupt the normal hair cycle, leading to more than 10% of hairs entering the shedding phase. This results in noticable excess shedding as you describe.

It often starts approximately three months after the operation. The good news is that for the majority of people it settles within three to four months. The hair then grows back. A few people with nutritional/ vitamin deficiencies can experience more prolonged hair loss. If this is happening it is worth seeing your GP or a specialist for blood tests.
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Re: Can having a major operation cause hair loss?

Postby krobinson79 on Thu Aug 16, 2018 1:21 pm

Thank you! That is so useful to know
Karen
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