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Sudden Appearance Of Facial Hair

Q: I have facial hair on and under my chin.  They just came all at once. What is the reason for this and how can I get rid of them?  I've tried using Nair facial remover and other items, but nothing seems to work.

Dr. Donnica: While I'm sure that your major concern is how to get rid of this unwanted facial hair, my concern is what made it appear all of a sudden.  Most facial hair growth comes on gradually and is due to hereditary factors.  When a woman has "sudden" hair growth, we want to make sure she doesn't have a hormonal imbalance.  The most common hormonal imbalance leading to facial hair growth is the decreasing estrogen levels associated with menopause.  Other conditions associated with facial hair growth include anything that would decrease your estrogen levels and/or increase your testosterone or androgen levels.  One example is Polycystic Ovary Syndrome. 

Before removing this hair, I recommend that you consult your doctor for an evaluation and an examination.  During this visit, you can also ask your doctor if you might benefit from Vaniqa (eflornithine hydrochloride monohydrate), the only prescription topical cream for inhibiting excess facial hair growth.  While it only works in 70% of patients, it may be worth trying.

Created: 4/5/2003  -  Donnica Moore, M.D.

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