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I’m postmenopausal and my hair is thinning — Ask Dr Jean

Ask Dr Jean 27 Aug 2018
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When it comes to women's health, there is no such thing as a silly question. Do you have a question you want answered, but have been too afraid or embarrassed to bring it up with your GP? Or you forgot to ask while you were in the doctor's surgery? Now, you can 'Ask Dr Jean'.

This question has been answered by Jean Hailes endocrinologist (hormone specialist) Dr Sonia Davison (pictured).

Dr Sonia Davison, wearing a black blazer and smiling


Dear Dr Jean. I'm 53 and postmenopausal and have noticed my hair getting thinner, to the point I can now see my scalp through the front of my hairline. I presume it's because of the loss of oestrogen, but is there something I can do about it? Can I take oestrogen supplements or something else? Thanks.


Scalp hair loss is common after menopause and is most likely due to the large drop in oestrogen experienced with menopause. However, other factors may play a role, including stress, other medical problems, iron deficiency, other hormonal imbalances, and genetics/family history.

There is an excellent information sheet, Patterned Hair Loss, on the Better Health Channel website, which goes through what is normal in terms of scalp hair loss, and approaches to management.

I recommend discussing the problem with your doctor, who may organise some tests to be performed, and may also recommend treatment or referral to a dermatologist or endocrinologist. Not every treatment is suitable for every woman after menopause, and will depend on their individual circumstances.