Generalized Diffuse Hair Loss

Generalized Diffuse Hair Loss

diffuse hair lossDiffuse hair loss is a condition wherein hair loss or hair thinning occurs on the entire scalp and it affects both sexes. Unlike female or male pattern baldness, this type of hair loss does not follow any typical pattern nor does lead to patchy baldness. Under Diffuse hair loss, hair follicles are left empty until hair growth cycle begins, while the diameter of hair begins to get smaller and it begins to shrink. It basically disturbs the anagen phase by stopping growth of healthy hair. You will also notice high amount of hair fall in Telogen phase. Telogen is basically a resting phase of hair follicles that lasts for 2-3 years. Often, diffuse hair loss stops even if you do not take the treatment, but early detection of the condition can help to minimize the damage and your hair can begin to regrow. Diffuse hair loss can be triggered by increased stress, unbalanced diet, illness and hormonal imbalance. Other reasons include aging and medications.

The most common type of diffuse shedding is telogen effluvium, in which anagen-phase hair follicles prematurely transit to the telogen phase, resulting in a noticeable increase in hair shedding at the end of the telogen phase two to three months later.

Hormonal Imbalance

Diffuse hair loss is often detected in women as compared to men. Hormonal fluctuations can cause this type of hair loss which may happen due to pregnancy, menopause or some medications. Your healthy hair can become thin and you suffer from prolong hair loss.

Nutritional deficiency

Proper nutrition is important for healthy hair. Zinc, iron play an important role in making your hair stronger and saving you from hair loss conditions. If you are restricting your body from necessary calories, protein and fatty acids, this will lead to Diffuse telogen hair loss. You need to keep a check whether you are getting adequate nutrients and vitamins. Did you know the deficiency of vitamin D is associated with diffuse hair loss condition. Vitamin D is essential for cell growth. Inadequate consumption of any vital nutrients can result in hair loss.


Intake of drugs available over the counter or prescribed by your doctor can lead to Diffuse telogen hair loss. Usually hair shedding begins after 12 weeks of consumption drugs. Drugs such as antidepressants, anti-convulsants, beta-blockers, oral contraceptive pills, retinoids and androgens can cause diffuse telogen hair loss.


Stress can be either physical, mental or psychological. Many people today live a hectic and stressful life. This is one of the most common cause for hair loss. Unfortunately, evidence for this association appears to be weak, as everyday stresses are not likely enough to trigger hair loss.

Thyroid conditions

A person suffering from thyroid conditions like hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism is most likely to suffer from diffuse telogen hair loss. Telogen hair shedding also occurs due to chronic systemic disorders like lymphoproliferative disorders, hepatic failure, systemic amyloidosis and inflammatory bowel disease.


This could also lead to diffuse hair loss. When you follow crash dieting, you tend to lose weight quickly. Rapid weight loss robs off essential nutrients from the body and scalp. Hair begins to fall out after a two to four month resting period.

Diffuse hair loss continues for more than three months and it is necessary to correct the underlying cause for it before the problem getting worse. Medical intervention may be required for this longer term diffuse hair loss.

However, in some cases, diffuse hair loss can correct automatically and this means that the cause has been corrected. In such situations, it is okay even if you do not seek treatment.

There is no specific hair loss treatment for diffuse hair loss condition. Some experts believe that topical the medicine such as minoxidil can help to reverse hair loss to some extent and promote hair regrowth. Chronic diffuse telogen hair loss is more complex because multiple sequential or repetitive triggers can be involved.

Management of diffuse hair loss depends on the cause and underlying pathomechanism in its relation to the hair growth cycle. Once the diagnosis is established, treatment appropriate for that diagnosis is likely to control the hair loss.

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