Clinical Presentation

The medical treatment of hirsutism would involve rectifying any causal hormonal balance, slow down or stop excessive hair growth, and to improve the aesthetic appearance of hirsutism, thereby ensuring that the patient has better quality of life. For the majority of women, today, a monotherapy with oral contraceptives that have antiandrogenic activity is recommended as a first line of treatment.

If clinical improvement of hirsutism is insufficient after 6-9 months’ monotherapy, combining an oral contraceptive pill with an anitandrogen is recommended. Topical eflornithine is a medical therapy that can be a useful adjuvant for hirsutism when used in conjunction with systemic medications or with laser/photoepilation. This research paper on drug induced facial hair in women medically termed as ‘Hirsutism’ is broadly divided into three sections.

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The first section deals with what is hirsutism and what medications cause excessive facial hair in women. The second part deals with a list of the specific drugs that induce female facial hair and the third section will analyze the pharmacological and medical procedures and the specific medications that are available to a female suffering from this condition and who desires treatment of this condition. Definition and Causative Agents for drug induced Hirsutism By definition, Hirsutism is induced by androgenic agents.

Androgenic agents such as Danazol, testosterone, adrenocorticotropic hormones and glucocorticoids are common agents associated with hirsutism. Anabolic steroids and medications containing androgens or that can directly or indirectly cause an increase in androgen activity or serum androgen concentrations may induce hirsutism. Hirsutism has been reported in 0. 1% of women taking oral contraceptives. Hair growth has been reported on the face and is most likely caused by the progestin component.

Hormone replacement therapy containing moderate to high amount of progestin are more likely to induce hirsutism. Epidemiology The overall incidence of drug induced hirsutism is not known. The incidence of hirsutism associated with specific drugs when known in Table 1. Well-recognized complications associated with drugs such as anabolic steroids, cyclosporine and minoxidil though not common are known. During the treatment of organ transplantation drug-induced hirsutism is manifested in 30% to 60% of the patients.

Clinical Presentation and Differential Diagnosis Women with drug induced hirsutism are manifest with excessive hair growth in a somewhat masculine pattern such as the appearance of coarse facial hair in the upper lip or chin area. The chest, lower abdomen and back may also be affected. A physical examination such as the Ferriman –Gallwey scoring system for Hirsutism evaluates hair growth and can be helpful. A normal score on the Ferriman – Gallwey scale is less than 8.

A careful medication history should be obtained and patient should be questioned regarding the onset and progression of hair growth, familial history of similar disorders, exposure to skin irritants, menstrual and reproductive history, presence of hair loss, acne and any changes in extremity or head size, facial contour or weight. During evaluation of hirsutism it is important to rule out nondrug causes such as polycystic ovary syndrome, ovarian tumor, adrenal tumor, hyperprolactinemia, congenital adrenal hyperplasia, cushings syndrome, diabetes and thyroid disease.

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