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Minoxidil

What works?

Learn more about the effects of these drugs. The most reliable research is summed up for you in our featured article.

By mouth

Minoxidil belongs to the general class of medicines called antihypertensives. It is used to treat high blood pressure (hypertension). High blood pressure… Read more

Brand names include: Loniten

On the skin

Minoxidil applied to the scalp is used to stimulate hair growth in adult men and women with a certain type of baldness. The exact way that this medicine… Read more

Brand names include: Apo-Gain, Gen-Minoxidol

Drug classes About this
Alopecia Agent, Antihypertensive, Peripheral Vasodilator

What works? Research summarized

Evidence reviews

Treatments for female pattern hair loss

The most common type of hair loss in women is FPHL, also known as androgenic alopecia. Unlike men, women do not go bald, but have hair thinning predominantly over the top and front of the head. It can occur at any time, from puberty until later in life. However, it occurs more frequently in postmenopausal women.

Treatment of female pattern hair loss

Female pattern hair loss (FPHL) as a distinctive entity was first described about 30 years ago. The objective of this study was to perform a systematic review of all randomized controlled trials for treatment of FPHL. A preliminary search was carried out in several databases up to August 2008 to identify all randomized controlled trials on nonsurgical interventions for treatment of FPHL. Studies reporting fewer than 10 patients and non-English articles were excluded. Additionally, references of relevant articles and reviews were checked manually in search for additional sources. Among 238 citations found in the preliminary search, 12 fulfilled all criteria to be included in the systematic review. Topical minoxidil 1% to 5% for 24 to 48 weeks was shown to be effective in FPHL and its effect was not related to age or androgen level of patients. In addition, it may be effective in women with FPHL, both with and without hyperandrogenism, and in young and old premenopausal or postmenopausal. In patients with increased serum androgens, oral flutamide but not finasteride or cyproterone acetate was more effective than no treatment. Topical minoxidil is effective in patients with FPHL, with or without hyperandrogenism, but there is limited evidence for the efficacy of antiandrogens.

Dementia: A NICE-SCIE Guideline on Supporting People With Dementia and Their Carers in Health and Social Care

This guideline has been developed to advise on supporting people with dementia and their carers in health and social care. The guideline recommendations have been developed by a multidisciplinary team of health and social care professionals, a person with dementia, carers and guideline methodologists after careful consideration of the best available evidence. It is intended that the guideline will be useful to practitioners and service commissioners in providing and planning high-quality care for those with dementia while also emphasising the importance of the experience of care for people with dementia and carers.

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Summaries for consumers

Treatments for female pattern hair loss

The most common type of hair loss in women is FPHL, also known as androgenic alopecia. Unlike men, women do not go bald, but have hair thinning predominantly over the top and front of the head. It can occur at any time, from puberty until later in life. However, it occurs more frequently in postmenopausal women.

Treatments for alopecia areata, alopecia totalis and alopecia universalis

There is no good trial evidence that any treatments provide long‐term benefit to patients with alopecia areata, alopecia totalis and alopecia universalis.

Non surgical therapy for anal fissure.

Anal fissure is a painful ulcer usually occurring in the posterior midline of the skin just outside the entry to the rectum. Its persistence is due to spasm of the internal sphincter muscle. The typical pain of this condition is pain on moving one's bowels that persists for some time afterward. Relief with healing of chronic fissures until very recently has been achieved by surgical procedures aimed at ablation of the sphincter spasm. Because of the risk of incontinence resulting from surgery, medical alternatives for surgery have been sought. Among the older medications, bran is effective in preventing recurrence of acute fissure. Local application of muscle relaxing therapy is effective in healing chronic anal fissure, though not as well as surgery, and with considerable risk of adverse events during therapy. There is a Cochrane review related to this review dealing only with surgical procedures.

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