Hormone Replacement Therapy Reverted My Androgenetic Alopecia | HairLossTalk Forums

Hormone Replacement Therapy Reverted My Androgenetic Alopecia

Discussion in 'Success Stories' started by chillvisio, Aug 31, 2016.

  1. chillvisio

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    Hello dear HairLossTalk.com readers,

    Please, note that the following information is related only to transgender individuals and shows the extent to which one might regrow her hair while on HRT (Hormone Replacement Therapy). If you are a cisgender person it will be the worst possible idea to go on HRT as a hair regrowth, unless you do not care loosing your male scent, fertility, male sex drive, lots of body hair, masculinity and grow a pair of boobs ;) I've noticed that many transgender persons are browsing and writing here, so I decided to share my story with hope that it might be helpful for some of them.

    Please, also note that I'm on a DIY HRT regimen and this is not a safe way to transition.


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    I'm 36 years old. I was loosing my hair since I was 30. It was constantly making me less and less confident. I already had gender dysphoria, but was in denial and didn't want to accept myself and to disclose it to anyone. I was a diffuse balder. Thankfully it's all in history right now, since after I started my medical transition my hair reacted to the meds.

    I moved and update all my pictures to Imgur. Please, take a look at my hair regrowth timeline at http://imgur.com/a/HP27E

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Updates to my regimen and blood work data:

    Update Dec 3 2015: After about a week I started losing my libido and my sebum production was limited also to zero. As a result my face was drier and even my nose which used to become oily only about an hour after taking a shower became dry too. There were no other physical changes, but only psychological ones: I felt good, no more depressed, my mind was clearer.

    Update Dec 8 2015: I decided to take 100mg of Androcur only for three weeks and then go to test my liver enzymes and my hormone levels. Then I will lower my Androcur dose to 75mg divided in 50mg dose at 9AM and (half pill) 25mg dose at 9PM. Then I will go to test my T and E2 levels again and one more time lower the Androcur dose to 50mg each day at 9AM. If I were lucky enough I might even lower the dose to 25mg and maintain my T at castrate/female levels.

    Update Dec 12 2015: I started noticing some short but pigmented hairs appearing on the surface of my hearline. It was a good sing and was such a motivator that I was doing the right thing.

    Update Dec 16 2015: It is my last day on 100mg of Androcur. I am crossing fingers and going to the lab for my tests tomorrow morning. I will get back with the results shortly. In the mean time more short hairs were popping on my hearline making the gaps between them look more and more insignificant. Oh, God, I lost all this hair thanks to DHT :( Estradiol is bringing them back to life and it is so so cute!

    Update Dec 17 2015: I've updated my regimen and right now it is like that:
    5 mg of finasteride/Proscar (mornings at 9)
    75 mg of Androcur divided in two doses of 50mg (9AM and 9PM)
    2 mg Estrofem (afternoons at 3.30)

    Update Dec 18 2015: My blood work results are here:
    Liver enzymes
    AST (GOT): 15.25 U/l (ref. range for women <32)
    ALT (GPT): 21.49 U/l (ref. range for women <33)
    Hormones
    Estradiol: 50.4 pg/ml
    Testosterone: 22 ng/dl

    No matter that I have virtually no testosterone I do not get tired easily. I am am doing long distance walking since 2012 of about 7-9 miles each day and I did not notice anything unusual beside having more appetite after my workouts which seems to be because my about year long depression is gone since I started my regimen.
    My shading on male pattern baldness affected areas has stopped.

    Update Dec 27 2015: I've updated my regimen and right now it looks like this:
    5 mg of finasteride/Proscar (mornings at 9)
    75 mg of Androcur divided in two doses of 50mg (9AM and 9PM)
    2 mg Estrofem (mornings at 10) & 2 measures of Oestrogel equivalent to 3 mg of oral 17ß-Estradiol (evenings at 10)

    As you may see, I increased my estradiol dosage, as my last estradiol levels were quite low, while my T levels were at castrate and it is generally not a good idea to stay low on sex hormones. I hope to see better results next month.
    I noticed that my breast buds started to develop. A tiny (about the size of a green pea seed) hard tissue is forming beyond my nipple area. It is sort of painful to touch.

    Update Jan 6 2016: My new blood work results are here:
    Hormones
    Estradiol: 85.68 pg/ml
    Testosterone: 26 ng/dl

    Estradiol levels are higher than three weeks ago, thanks to my added night dose of trans-dermal 17ß-Estradiol. I have noticed accelerated breast development since increasing my Estradiol. I am no longer checking my hair regrowth progress every day and this makes me less depressed. I am doing it each week instead. While my hair is getting longer I also notice further progress with new terminal hairs appearing at my hair line (it is easier to notice them there if your hair is kinda long). They become longer each week. I'm afraid that Estradiol on its own will take at least two years to have some good results. Meanwhile I started thinking about an orchie as an ultimate chance to keep my regrowth while discontinuing Cyproterone Acetate, as it will no longer be needed.

    Update Feb 8 2016: My new blood work results are here:
    Hormones
    Testosterone: 28 ng/dl (just 2 ng/dl up from my last blood work while on 75 mg of cypro)
    Estradiol: 82.28 pg/ml (sadly even lower than last times when it was 85.68 pg/ml and lower than recommended at least 125 pg/ml for feminizing regimes)

    And I am updating my regimen to:
    5 mg Finasteride
    2 mg Estrofem 9am, 2 mg Estrofem at 4pm, 2 measures of Oestrogel (equals 3mg pill PO) 10pm.

    Update Mar 1 2016: My new blood work results are here:
    Hormones:
    Estradiol 95.37 pg/ml
    Testosterone: 13 ng/dl (down a lot, hopefully due to increased estradiol dose)
    <!--OUCH--!> Prolactin: 213 ng/ml (10 tilmes above normal levels)

    My prolactin levels are significantly elevated (hyperprolactinemia) and I suspect that it might be due to Androcur, so I am discontinuing it by slowly decreasing dose from 50 mg to 25 mg the next two days, to 12.5 mg the last one. It is also possible that I might have prolactinoma, so MRI is a must have.

    Update Mar 7 2016: My new blood work results are here:
    Prolactin: 37.11 ng/ml (still above normal levels, but down 5.7 times - abt 3 days after stopping Androcur)
    Testosterone: 20 ng/dl (up a bit after stopping Androcur, due to it stopped suppressing the Adrenal testosterone production)
    MRI result (costed a lot of money, but was necessary to do): No pituitary adenoma, all clear.

    I will avoid Androcur, as it has dopamine inhibitor properties, and dopamine is the prolatin production suppressor, so it is able to significantly increase prolactin levels which if stays like this longer is not healty.

    Update Mar 15 2016: Changes to my regimen:
    As I told you, I discontinued Androcur usage, because it was elevating my prolactin levels significantly. I've also reduced my estradiol dose to only two 2 mg pill a day (10am/10pm). Here is my HRT:
    4 mg Estrofem under the tongue (2mg AM/2mg PM)
    5 mg Finasteride
    50 mg Spironoloactone

    Update May 14 2016: Changes to my regimen:
    I've adjusted my HRT by increasing spironolactone to 100mg a day (50mg at 10am, 50mg at 8pm):
    4 mg Estrofem under the tongue (2mg AM/2mg PM)
    5 mg Finasteride
    100 mg Spironoloactone (50mg AM/50mg PM)

    In the meantime my temples started to fill in and my hairline is still recovering from DHT.

    Update May 20 2016: Changes to my regimen:
    Despite discontinuing Cypro almost 3 months ago and being on only 50 mg of spironolactone untill last week, the hormone levels in blood work came out just fine:
    Estradiol 109 pg/ml
    Testosterone 24 mg/dl

    Update Aug 25 2016: Changes to the way I take estradiol pills and new bloodwork:
    I changed the way I take the estradiol hemihydrate pills from sublingual to sublabial (between my gums and my lower lip. It makes the pill dissolve slowly, and less of the ingredient gets swallowed with the saliva.
    I discontinued Cypro about 6 months ago and last Monday (Aug 22) I did my usual blood work and here are the results:
    Estradiol 88 pg/ml
    Testosterone 9 mg/dl

    My testosterone is very low, but I am definitely not missing it, neither I feel any negative effects from its extremely low levels. I'm doing HIIT (interval) training each morning and walk about 3 miles each day, but I do not feel loss of energy or something similar.
    My hair is still regrowing and I see new terminal hairs appearing on my hairline and temples each time I check for progress. I no longer need to think about my hair all the time.

    Update Feb 13 2017: Changes to my regimen:
    6 mg Estrofem under the tongue (2 mg 10am / 2 mg 4pm / 2mg 10pm)
    100 mg Spironolactone (50 mg 9:50am / 50 mg 8pm)
    5 mg Finasteride (9:50am)

    I increased my estradiol dosage, because my boob growth slowed. In the same time hair regrowth didn't stop.

    Update Jun 1 2017: Discontinuing Finasteride.

    I'm planning to include bio-identical Progesterone in my regimen to have my boobs reach Tanner 5 stage. Some of progesterone is automatically converted to pregnanolone and the to allopregnanolone - a neuro-steroid. Finasteride blocks 5AR, therefor synthesis of allopregnanolone. I'm not going to quit cold turkey, so I'm tapering off Finasteride using these scheme:
    • I was taking 5mg every day
    • I'm going to first lower the dosage to 2.5mg every other day for the next two weeks
    • Then I'm lowering the dosage to 1.25mg every third day for another two weeks
    • Finally I'm lowering the dosage to 0.5mg every fourth day for another two weeks
    • Discontinuing Finasteride

    Update Jun 24 2017: Changes to my regimen:
    While tapering off Finasteride I'm moving from 50mg of Spironolactone 2 times a day to 12.5mg of CPA every day. I'm adding 12.5mg of CPA right away and reducing my dosage of spironolactone for the next 3 weeks when I will just stay on 12.5mg of CPA every day (a quarter of pill).

    Update Jul 17 2017: Changes to my regimen:
    Estrofem 2mg SL bid (two times a day)
    Progesterone (bio-identical) PO 100mg qhs (every night at bedtime)
    CPA 12.5mg qd (every day)

    Update Aug 31 2017: Changes to my regimen:
    Estrofem 2mg SL bid (two times a day)
    Œstrogel 0.06% 2.5g qd (every day)
    CPA 12.5mg qd (every day)
    I dropped Progesterone, because it was making me depressed. Three days later, my depression is disappearing.

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    HRT is definitely not for everyone. Please, avoid messing with your hormones unless you want to transition and keep in mind that it's never too late to feminize your face and your body... even in mid-30s.
     
    #1 chillvisio, Aug 31, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2017
  2. buckthorn

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    Wow, you look really good with female facial characteristics. Also, the hair is impressive. In the after pic, you have much more happiness in your eyes. This is working out well for you and I wish you continued success. :)
     
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  3. chillvisio

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    Oh, thank you :) I really like better the way that I look now. There certainly are some things to fix only with SRS, but I look overall happier than pre-HRT. It's not only the hair regrowth that made me look happier.
     
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  4. IamZhea

    IamZhea Member

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    Awesome post with a lot of detail. I'm transgender as well. I am 2 months HRT, 3.5 months finasteride. Seeing a ton of regrowth already! Cheers.
     
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  5. hairblues

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    i wish you much happiness :) you look great and very happy.
     
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  6. cyrusthegreat@hotmail.com

    cyrusthegreat@hotmail.com Established Member

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    Your attention to detail in documenting your regimen is very admirable.
    Looking forward to your continued success.
     
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  7. Massive

    Massive Experienced Member My Regimen

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    I think that buckthorn's first post summarized everything I wanted to say.
    I wish you best of luck in your journey.
     
  8. pegasus2

    pegasus2 Senior Member

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    Ugh.. Why must I choose between masculinity and hair? One is no use to me without the other.
     
  9. Roberto_72

    Moderator

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    Indeed a great result. Good luck in your journey!
     
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  10. hlt4678

    hlt4678 New Member

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    Thank you for making such a detailed thread about your transition! I hope to be in a position where I can make a similar post sometime next year, if my hrt goes well. After having a crappy week with my hair situation and dysphoria, finding this fills me up with so much hope. After ten months, your skin looks so much smoother and full of life.

    Am I right in assuming you doing this without any growth stimulants like minoxidil?
     
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  11. chillvisio

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    Wow! A big big thank you to every one of you :) Even in my wildest dreams I couldn't expect such a great feedback from so many forum friends.

    @IamZhea Dear sis, I'm wishing you have head full of hair ASAP and excellent transition.

    @hlt4678 You got it right. No minoxidil or any other growth stimulant. Sometimes I'm asking myself would it be a better idea to just get a minoxidil foam and enjoy greater hair regrowth at faster rate or just wait and see when regrowth slows down and if it's not enough at that point, try minoxidil.

    @pegasus2 I hope that everything improves with you without losing your masculinity. Probably using finasteride/dutasteride+minoxidil might be a good idea where no HRT is allowed.
     
  12. Ruby

    Ruby Established Member My Regimen

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    @chillvisio Stories like yours here, and on the other forum site too, just confirm that much more that I need to embrace my own transition and quit second-guessing myself. I've waited far too long for this.

    I have my HRT meds in hand today, and a 3 day holiday weekend starting tomorrow, so after I get home from work tomorrow afternoon, the Big Journey Begins :eek:

    This way if I have a bad reaction to my first dose of spironolactone, I'll have a couple days to recover.
     
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  13. hlt4678

    hlt4678 New Member

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  14. hlt4678

    hlt4678 New Member

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    oops, I goofed up on my last post and there is no way to edit it that I can see! :confused:

    Bottom two paragraphs are mine.
     
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  15. chillvisio

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    @Ruby I'm wishing you a great journey and good moments with your HRT :)

    @hlt4678 Let's hope that we regrow most of our lost hair without growth promoting agents like minoxidil.
     
  16. stachu

    stachu Experienced Member My Regimen

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    I will not say more than Good Luck.
     
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  17. chillvisio

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    @k9gatton That's correct. I was diffuse balder on top. Happily I stopped it before it was too late. It's great that I wouldn't need to use a wig.

    @ForeverLacey Congrats on your 9 years of HRT. What I see from your photo is that you look great and happy and your hair is thick :) It's a great surprise for me to see that so many trans people are reading these forums these days.

    @stachu Thank you! Your success story is so inspiring. I just read it and saw that you were able to regrow all the lost hair on your temples.
     
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  18. stachu

    stachu Experienced Member My Regimen

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    @chillvisio Yeah, but currently they are a bit receded. I just lost systematic mechanics to put minoxidil twice a day. Sometimes i even forget to eat finasteride pill. I just wont care till balding will not gonna be noticeable again i think :)). But lets hope no.

    EDIT : Ehh.. I cant hang it anymore. I could easly leave it but.. wanted to say that really i dont tolerate something like HRT but.. If you're really happy.. stick with it. I am gonna be happy with you. Good luck.
     
    #18 stachu, Sep 7, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2016
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  19. chillvisio

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    @stachu I hope that you get it back again soon. Sometimes it is time consuming to do all these routines on a daily basis.
    Yeah, HRT is a game changer for hair regrowth, but it's of course not the good way to go for a cis person, so I really get it why you don't tolerate it. In fact hair regrowth is part of the good side effects of what a trans woman will be looking for. A few days ago I saw a trans man's then/now photos and guess what, in just 7 months his temples were already obviously receding :)
     
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  20. chillvisio

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    @antydhtor Oh, thank you for being so kind! You sound positive as well ;) All of you who have written in this thread are so nice.

    Thank you for asking me this question. I am taking my estrofem pills sublingually or sublabially (between the lower lip and the gums) to avoid first pass metabolism of estrogen in liver, which on its side reduces risk of deep venous thrombosis and hopefully liver damage. There was a web site explaining differences between absorption via oral and sublingual route. Here is a graphic which explains the difference:
    [​IMG]
     
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