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Q: I am 33 years old and have been experiencing a serious amount of hair shedding for about the past 6 weeks. I have been taking Paxil CR for about 16 weeks. The strange thing is that the hair that is growing back is very thin in diameter and frizzy and unruly. Not nearly as thick as my hair used to be. Do you think this has been caused by the antidepressant?

A: Many women ask me if antidepressants such as Paxil, Prozac, Sarafem, Zoloft, Wellbutrin and others can cause hair loss. In my experience they do not. At least 20% of women have alopecia so that means that 20% of those on any medication whether antidepressant, birth control pills, etc will have alopecia. This does not mean the medication is causing the hair loss.

The best things to do for alopecia is to get effective treatment as outlined in my alopecia article, not to stop other medications which may be important for you.

Hope this is helpful.


Geoffrey Redmond, MD

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