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Taking medication or drugs at any time comes with it the understanding that for some people, there will be the possibility of side effects. Medications causing hair loss are typically those that interfere with the normal cycle of scalp hair growth.

Hair Growth Cycle Interference is Caused by Medications

The anagen phase is one that lasts 2-6 years and is consistent with hair growth. During the telogen phase, the hair takes a rest from growing. This is a period lasting about three months. By the end of the Telogen phase, the hair sheds and is replaced by new growth.


Appearing around 2-4 months after taking medication, Telogen Effluvium will cause the hair follicles into the resting phase, resulting in an early shedding of hair. It is common for people experiencing telogen effluvium to shed approx. 100 and 150 hairs a day.

Is Telogen Effluvium Reversible?

Luckily the shedding from telogen effluvium is reversible once the offending medication has been stopped.

There are numerous medications that cause hair loss in patients. Some of these includes:

  • Antibiotics
  • Anticonvulsants (epilepsy drug)
  • Antifungal Medications
  • Antidepressants
  • Cholesterol-Lowering Medication
  • Cancer Treatments and Chemotherapy drugs
  • Medications for High Blood Pressure
  • Hormone replacement therapy drugs
  • Mood altering drugs and stabilisers
  • NSAID anti-inflammatory drugs
  • Steroids
  • Thyroid medications
  • Diet Pills
  • Street Drugs – Cocaine


Anagen effluvium is hair loss taking place during the anagen phase when the hairs are actively growing. It disrupts the matrix cell division, which are the cells responsible for producing new hairs. Within a few days to weeks after taking the medication, a patient will potentially experience this kind of hair loss. Commonly experienced by patients on chemotherapy for cancer, the severity of the hair loss is notable and most of the hair on a patient’s head will fall out. It is also common for a patient’s eyebrows, eyelashes and body hair to fall out with anagen effluvium.

Is Anagen Effluvium Reversible?

This hair loss is usually measurable by the dosage on the drug and the patient’s sensitivity to the drug. This hair loss is reversible when the therapy is over, though hair may not return to its pre-treatment thickness.

Other Causes of Hair Loss Include:

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