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Alopecia - Hair Loss




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Literature Discussion & Clinical Studies

Last update

July 2021

What is Alopecia - Hair Loss

The hair loss condition known as alopecia can impact only a person´s scalp or it can impact the entire body. Alopecia can be a temporary or permanent condition. People can experience this condition due to heredity, hormonal changes, medical conditions, or a normal part of aging. Any person can experience hair loss on their head, but it is more prevalent in men.1

Baldness occurs when people experience excessive hair loss from the scalp. It can be influenced by genetics, with hair loss also being dependent on aging. Some people choose available treatment options to help prevent further hair loss while other individuals use makeup or just leave this condition untreated.1

Some people may experience sudden hair loss while in others this may occur gradually. This may just impact a person´s scalp or may impact the whole body.1

Signs and symptoms of hair loss can be the following:

  • The most common type of hair loss is gradual thinning on top of the head. This can affect people as they get older. Men often start to lose the hair from the front of their head while women possess a broadening of the part in their hair.
  • Circular or patchy bald spots. Some individuals experience hair loss in circular or patchy bald spots on the scalp, beard, or eyebrows. People can experience pain in the skin or itchiness before losing hair.
  • Sudden loosening of hair by a physical or emotional shock. This type of hair loss makes the hair thinner, but it lasts for only a limited period of time.
  • Full-body hair loss can be caused by some conditions and medical treatments like chemotherapy.
  • Patches of scaling that spread over the scalp. This is a sign of ringworm that is referred to as a fungal infection of the skin.

Factors related to hair loss are the following:1

  • Family history (heredity).
  • Hormonal changes and medical conditions
  • Medications and supplements
  • Radiation therapy to the head
  • A very stressful event
  • Hairstyles and treatments

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Alopecia - Hair Loss

Gradual thinning, sudden loss of hair, and circular or patchy bald spots are among the most common.


Preclinical data suggests CBD among cannabinoid receptors may be therapeutic for Alopecia – Hair Loss.


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The connection between Cannabinoids & Alopecia - Hair Loss

Studies find that CBD and THC may have great therapeutic potential and may be used to help treat Alopecia – Hair Loss. CBD and THC are well-known cannabinoids, however, they do not have the same psychoactive effects. THC is psychoactive while CBD does not possess psychoactive effects. According to WHO guidelines, the cannabidiol CBD is generally well tolerated with a good safety profile.

Research shows that CBD has been found to exhibit activities on hair follicle elongation and hair matrix keratinocytes activated through cannabinoid receptors in the hair follicle cells.2

The literature discussion is an overview of the published results from scientific studies investigating if and how cannabinoids can be beneficial in the treatment of Alopecia – Hair Loss. The overview will be updated regularly to ensure the newest and most accurate information.

Cannabinoid receptors propose therapeutic potential
Ständer discussed that cannabinoid receptor agonist can exhibit anti-inflammatory and anti- nociceptive activity through interaction with cannabinoid receptors on skin nerve fibers and mast cells. This proposes their commonly accepted broad therapeutic potential. 3

Targeting CB1 may be beneficial in hair growth
In a review article by Toch, it was mentioned that hair growth was promoted through an oral administration of Rimonabant analog CB1 antagonist in C57BL/6J mice. 4

Clinical trials are research studies that examine new treatments and evaluate their effects on human health outcomes.

Cannabinoids propose hair regrowth in men and women
In a case study by Smith & Satino, the effect of topical hemp oil was examined in 35 individuals suffering from androgenetic alopecia (AGA). The study participants were instructed to apply a thin layer of a topical extract once each morning to the areas of baldness. It was found that the treatment with topical hemp showed a slightly better effect in men than in women, and the vertex area did better than the temporal areas. All people experienced some hair regrowth without reported adverse effects. 2

In a paper by Buranakarn, it has been discussed that treatment with extracted cannabis oil may help people suffering from Alopecia Areata (AA).

Cannabis oil generates faster hair growth compared to medicine cream
The Asian-male-52-years-old was diagnosed with AA and was given several creams to help improve the symptoms. However, the treatment with creams was not effective.
The patient then applied extracted cannabis oil on the 4cm AA area while the other two creams were applied on the other 2 areas. After 1 month of treatment, it was shown that hair growth was generated faster with extracted cannabis oil compared to medicine cream.5

Extracted cannabis oil exhibits beneficial activity that help reduce the inflammation in the affected body area.5

Cannbinoid agonist relieve hair-pulling symptoms
In an open-label treatment study by Grant, the effect of dronabinol (cannabinoid agonist) in female subjects an open-label treatment study by Grant, the effect of dronabinol (cannabinoid agonist) in female subjects suffering from trichotillomania (hair-pulling disorder) was examined. It was shown that trichotillomania symptoms were reduced upon the treatment with dronabinol.6
Read more
  1. Mayo Clinic. Hair Loss. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/hair-loss/symptoms-causes/syc-20372926
  2. Smith, G. Et Al., (2021). “Hair Regrowth with Cannabidiol (CBD)-rich Hemp Extract – A Case Series”. https://hairauthority.com/hair-regrowth-with-cannabidiol-cbd-rich-hemp-extract-a-case-series/
  3. Ständer, S., Et al., (2005).” Distribution of cannabinoid receptor 1 (CB1) and 2 (CB2) on sensory nerve fibers and adnexal structures in human skin”. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/15927811/
  4. Tóth, K. F., Et al., (2019). ”Cannabinoid signaling in the skin: Therapeutic potential of the ‘cannabinoid’ system.” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6429381/
  5. Buranakarn, V (2019). “Alopecia Areata Treatment with Extracted Cannabis Oil”. http://www.ar.or.th/ImageData/Magazine/20056/DL_EN_10565.pdf?t=637481314515516928
  6. Grant, Jon E., Et al., (2011). ”Dronabinol, a cannabinoid agonist, reduces hair pulling in trichotillomania: a pilot study.” https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21590520/


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