Thursday, August 03, 2006

Common Drugs That Cause Hair Loss

It is well known that many cancer chemotherapy medications cause baldness. Most people are willing to put up with hair loss when accepting treatments for life-threatening diseases. But a large number of popular medications can cause hair loss while neither pharmaceutical industry nor your doctor will tell you about this side effect.

Here we compile a list of drugs that are know to cause hair loss in some patients:

Cholesterol-lowering drug:

clofibrate (Atromis-S) and gemfibrozil (Lopid)

Parkinson Medications:

levodopa (Dopar, Larodopa)

Ulcer drugs:

cimetidine (Tagamet), ranitidine (Zantac) and famotidine (Pepcid)


Coumarin and Heparin

Agents for gout:

Allopurinol (Loporin, Zyloprim)


penicillamine, auranofin (Ridaura), indomethacin (i\Indocin), naproxen (Naprosyn), sulindac (Clinoril), and methotrexate (Folex)

Drugs derived from vitamin-A:

isotretinoin (Accutane) and etretinate (Tegison)

Anticonvulsants for epilepsy:

trimethadione (Tridione)


tricyclics, amphetamines

Beta blocker drugs for high blood pressure:

atenolol (Tenormin), metoprolol (Lopressor), nadolol (Corgard), propranolol (Inderal) and timolol (Blocadren)

Antithyroid agents:

carbimazole, Iodine, thiocyanate, thiouracil


Blood thinners, male hormones (anabolic steroids)

Next time your doctor prescribes any drug for you, ask if it will cause hair loss. You doctor may not realize this side effect. You can ask him or her to look it up in the Physicians' Desk Reference, which lists the side effects of all prescription medications. If the drug is linked to reversible alopecia, ask if another can be substituted. And just to make sure your physician has given you accurate information, when you get the prescription filled, ask your pharmacist as well.

No comments: