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Question
Posted by: Kate | 2004/11/17

Hair Growth inhibitor spray

Is using a hair growth innhibitor spray effective for unwanted facial and body hair. I've read you have to use quiet a few time before you see results. If it is effective, can you give me the name of a good spray or lotion and the costs therof.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImagePharmacist

Various cosmetic ranges do have products that claim to REDUCE hair growth. These products are to be applied after using a conventional method of hair removal such as shaving or waxing. Your cosmetic consultant should be able to give you more info on these products. Note that there is no published clinical data that backs up claims that over the counter hair inhibitors can slow or stop hair growth. Herbal remedies sold over the counter and online have also not been proven to work in published clinical studies. The only product that has demonstrated it can work as claimed is a prescription cream recently approved in the USA called Vaniqa. Only Vaniqa has done the type of extensive testing necessary to determine the effectiveness of a product.

Some prescription oral medications have been found to affect hair growth. They can be helpful in reducing hair growth , but it's important to discuss possible unwanted side effects with your physician first:
• Spironolactone (also known as Aldactone) is arguably the number one hirsutism treatment of choice for dermatologists in the US. Spironolactone has antiandrogenic effects that may enhance treatment of several androgen-excess conditions, particularly severe hirsutism. It interferes with the production of testosterone and it increases the metabolism of any testosterone that is produced. Spironolactone binds to cell androgen receptors and blocks them from binding to naturally produced androgens. In addition with long term spironolactone use, there is a gradual reduction in 5 alpha reductase activity. It is this enzyme that converts testosterone to the more potent, hair follicle stimulating, dihydrotestosterone. Flutamide is a potent antiandrogen that strongly binds to androgen receptors on cells in hair follicles. The binding of Flutamide to cell androgen receptors blocks androgens from stimulating hair growth.

• Cyproterone acetate may also be effective

• Ketoconazole is a relatively new and particularly potent anti androgen drug. Since 1985 there have been various studies suggesting that ketoconazole could be used to treat hirsutism. Ketoconazole works by blocking the production of hormones by the ovaries and the adrenal glands. As with other antiandrogen drugs, there are several different research reports that claim a reduction in hirsutism with different drug use protocols. Although references might seem to suggest that ketoconazole is a popular treatment for hirsutism, most dermatologists are wary of using it on a regular basis.

As you can see there are various options. You may start by using one of the cosmetic ranges, but should you feel that your problem is still not improving it may be worth (should you feel that it is justified) speaking to a dermatologist

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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