Sunday, January 15, 2006

hair, excessive (hirsutism)

Hirsutism is excessive body hair in a masculine pattern as a result of heredity, hormonal imbalance, porphyria, or medication.
Elderly women frequently have an increase in facial hair, especially on the chin and upper lip. This may be caused by postmenopause hormonal changes, adrenal tumors, or congenital disorders. This excess hair is very distressing to many women. Treatment of hirsutism includes removal of hair by tweezers or professionally with electrolysis. A mild bleach can be used by many women to lighten the hair color and make it less noticeable. Currently, Spironolactone is being used to inhibit testosterone and therefore reduce facial hair growth. The usual dosage is 25 mg two times a day.
Steinberg, F. U. Care of the Geriatric Patient. 6th ed. St. Louis: C. V. Mosby Co., 1983.

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