Male Pattern Baldness
The figures reflect an ‘end stage’ hair loss pattern and although some people may appear to progress from a lower numbered pattern to a higher numbered pattern, Dr. Norwood believe that these were not progressive patterns. That means, for example, that a man with a Class 7 pattern will develop this pattern directly and not evolve from a Class 3 pattern to a Class 7 pattern mover their lifetime. Of interest, many men with Class 7 patterns actually develop those patterns in their 20s
The value of these patterns is for you, to compare this figures with your hair loss, to help you determine what your pattern may become as you continue to lose hair. People, for example, who are genetically destined to develop a 4A pattern will not evolve into a Class 6 or 7 pattern (95% certain).
This is important information to know because we believe that balding men should develop a Master Plan for their eventual hair loss with a good, honorable, ethical, skilled hair transplant surgeon who cares about you as a person. A man with a Class 4A pattern can get his hair transplanted and with about 95% certainty, not worry about developing a Class 6 or 7 pattern so if they get a hair transplant to manage their Class 4A pattern, they will put balding behind them for the rest of their lives.
Of course, predicting your eventual balding pattern may not be easy for most men. That is why we offer specialized tests to help predict the eventual balding pattern in our patients. We use miniaturization studies and a special instrument called HAIRCHECK which can, in combination, help us help you in predicting your balding pattern. Once a man is past 26 years old, it is easier to predict their hair loss pattern because their hormones have interacted with the genes for hair loss for many years.
If a man is 19, however, we can’t predict their hair loss pattern because the hormones and their genes have not be interacting long enough to show their eventual degree of balding. For this reason, we prefer that most men wait until there are at least 26 before considering a hair transplant. While they wait, we have various treatments that can slow or stop and even sometimes reverse the hair loss. That is why a long term relationship with your doctor is critical.