about 3 months ago, my girlfriend (33 years old) was submitted to a surgery in order to remove a benign uterine myoma, treat an inguinal hernia and remove the appendix. Now she is having some hair loss localized at the top of her head where we can see about 3 cm of her scalp (there is no hair loss at the sides or front). she went to a dermatologist and he asked for a blood test to see if she is anaemic (the test is ok, she isn’t anaemic) and says that this situation is temporary due to the surgery, but I’m a little sceptical after what I have read in this blog and in other web sites as well.
Her mother, father and sister don’t have hair loss, but on the other hand a few years ago she started to have a few hairs in her chin.
So my questions are: what kind of tests do you suggest her to do , and is this a case for a dermatologist or an endocrinologist?
I would start with a primary care doctor who can do some basic tests to rule out anemia and thyroid causes. You said she’s been tested for anemia though and was OK there… but the primary care doctor will then be able to refer your girlfriend to the appropriate specialist if other basic tests are done. In other words, my advice is to start with the primary care doctor and take it one step at a time.
Generally, major surgeries or general anesthesia can sometimes precipitate hair loss (called telogen effluvium) in some men and women, but some of the autoimmune alopecias can be stimulated from the stress of a surgery as well. The hair loss is generally temporary and can take as long as a year to normalize. It is thought that such surgery or general anesthesia is a “triggering” factor in a genetic predisposition to hair loss. If this is the case, you won’t know for a year or so.