If you search the internet for “minoxidil”, you’ll be told that it’s an “antihypertensive vasodilator medication” by Wikipedia. What do any of those words mean? Both are related to working to lower blood pressure in the area around your head: an antihypertensive is a generic term for something that lowers the blood pressure and vasodilation is the opening up of the blood vessels, achieving that affect. Researchers aren’t entirely sure how minoxidil works to prevent hair loss.
You probably recognize minoxidil by its generic name: Rogaine. Minoxidil tablets exist, but doctors strongly discourage the use of the oral medication to help with hair growth. Rogaine, on the other hand, is a topical treatment that comes in a solution or foam to spread over the affected area. It only helps to prevent hair loss during the duration of use, so it is by no means a permanent or even long-term solution, especially since the effect on older patients (65+) are mostly unstudied. It’s widely believed that Rogaine works best on young patients with a short history of hair loss. It is recognized to be able to help two major kinds of hair loss: male/female pattern baldness and alopecia areata.
If you have preexisting skin problems, hypertension, or heart disease, you should consult thoroughly with your doctor before use. There is quite a long list of side effects, with most of them being both uncommon and minor. In the case that you experience any of the side effects listed on this website, you should consult your physician.
Here are all the brand names of topical medication you may find that contain minoxidil, as compiled by the U.S. National Library of Medicine:
Apo-Gain, Gen-Minoxidol, Good Sense Hair Regrowth Treatment For Men, Hair Regrowth Treatment, Hair Regrowth Treatment For Men, Hair Regrowth Treatment For Women, Hairgro, Med Minoxidil, Men’s Rogaine, Minox, Renewal for Men, Rogaine, Rogaine For Men Extra Strength, Women’s Rogaine
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