Rogaine is the brand name for a drug which contains Minoxidil in 2% and 5% doses designed to combat hair loss. The main question is: Does Rogaine work?
Consider these facts:
Minoxidil was originally developed to reduce high blood pressure. One of the side effects noted was increased hair growth in some patients. This aspect of the drug was then utilized to market a medication with huge profit potential given the number of men and women in the global market concerned about hair loss or thinning hair.
The individuals who experienced this side effect would obviously answer YES to the question “Does Rogaine work?”
However, the human body is a complex organism and each individual responds differently to drugs and medications. What works for some may not work for others.
The manufacturers of Rogaine brought out a heavier dosage version, called Rogaine Extra Strength (5%). Some sources report that this version of Rogaine was 45% more successful in stopping hair loss and generating new growth than the standard version (2%).
However, it is important to note these other observations:
About 55% of the men who took part in clinical trials reported an improvement in their hair loss dilemma. This means that in some men hair loss stopped, in others, hair loss not only stopped but there was an increase in density of hair on the scalp.
So 55 out of 100 men would say that Rogaine does work to a degree. The other side of that percentage is that 45 men out of 100 did not see any difference.
Added to that, it appears that Rogaine works best on younger men whose hair loss has not gone longer than 10 years. Also the bald patch should be smaller than 4 inches across with some hair growth in the middle.
Does Rogaine work for hair loss on any part of the scalp?
The answer to that is No! Rogaine can improve hair growth or at least stop hair loss on the top of the scalp, called the vortex area. Hair loss on the sides (temples) or a receding hairline are not helped by Rogaine.
The lower dosage 2% version can be used by women. They are not advised to use the extra strength as the 5% version can result in increased facial hair growth which many women would find unacceptable.
In this though Rogaine scores an advantage over the other FDA drug approved for hair loss, namely Propecia. Propecia is only for men as it works in a different way to Rogaine by neutralizing DHT through a process involving the male hormone testosterone. So at least women have some hope of arresting hair loss by using Rogaine.
In the hair loss industry it pays to be skeptical over wild claims of success. According to government guidelines, there is no current treatment that can be guaranteed to stop hair loss and promote new hair growth.
So keeping those factors in mind a realistic answer should be given to the question: Does Rogaine work!
Yes, Rogaine does work for some but be prepared for disappointment. Rogaine can help hair loss on limited areas of the scalp, it is not a total hair loss solution.
Additionally, only when it is used daily and persistently does Rogaine work for some. Patience and determination are needed as results may not be seen for some months. Hair loss can even increase in the early stages of taking the medication so be prepared to stick with the treatment.