rjeazy

The hair loss is real...

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I'm really struggling with the loss of my hair, I already had thin hair but I had plenty of it, now I can't put my hair up in a ponytail or I have bald patches. I'm taking all the vitamins and I had my surgery in April but my hair doesn't look any better. Does anyone have any tips I could use? I'm shedding everywhere...

 

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You just have to get through it. 6-8 months. I cut my hair short. Good luck!

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I've been losing my hair since long before surgery, so I've had time to mourn the loss of it. I shaved my head a couple of weeks ago because I couldn't stand it anymore. A lot of people swear by biotin. But @GAviv is right. It will start growing again after your body adjusts. Hang in there!

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Sure is real. Mine started before my surgery as I lost a lot of weight beforehand. I've been taking biotin since before surgery and the hair loss is less now. Also had my hair cut short so it looks fuller now. Cutting the hair shorter means there is less weight pulling it down. The lighter the hair the fuller it will look as it fluffs up.

Be warned that if you go the biotin route ALL your body hair will increase. I'm told you need at least 10mcg per day to make any real difference, which is what I take.

Edited by Aussie H

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I was a little shocked because I didn't really have any post the op but now I'm in my 4th month post and suddenly I've got lots falling all the time. No nutrient issues as such cos I just did the full blood-panel at the end of the 3rd month but I'm hoping it'll pass sooner or later. 

Worst case I'll just go for bald - I suppose that's one benefit of being a guy. :\ 

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10 hours ago, rjeazy said:

I'm really struggling with the loss of my hair, I already had thin hair but I had plenty of it, now I can't put my hair up in a ponytail or I have bald patches. I'm taking all the vitamins and I had my surgery in April but my hair doesn't look any better. Does anyone have any tips I could use? I'm shedding everywhere...

I'm with Greer (GAviv) on getting your hair cut and maybe have some layers put in it.  Although I didn't lose much hair that I could detect, it did change from thick to fine and curly and I went grey pretty much overnight (but I was in my 50's when I had my WLS).

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My hair loss seems like it's slowing down now, at 7 months post-op. I started taking 10,000mg of biotin per day pre-op, and have kept that up. I've also been hitting my protein goals daily. The hair loss was worst from about 3 months to 6 months - I could see thin patches for sure. My husband acknowledged he could see them when I pointed them out, which is probably his polite way of saying, yes, they are visible. After 20+ years together, he knows my hot-button issues and when to be polite. The biotin did increase hair growth in other places (more little white fuzzy hairs all over, as I have blond hair). Right now, I have a halo of little baby hairs growing in all over my head. They look a bit funny, but better than bald patches. When the hair loss was at its worst, I colored my hair a lighter shade of blond, which made it look a bit better - my hair and my scalp were closer to the same color, so the remaining hairs weren't so sparse looking. If you're not already blond or blondish, I wouldn't recommend that, though, as processing your hair a lot can damage it, making things worse! 

Chemistry Queen on YouTube has a video about hair loss and the science behind it, if you're interested: 

 

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I wish I could post a new picture but cant get one small enough, go figure, hahaha (but I just mean jig small enough)

I am really, really trying to get in more protein. Gonna start drinking 2 of the Premier  Protein drinks daily (30gm each) . I know I haven't been getting in 60-75 gms, which is what I need for my current weight. I started this journey needing to lose ~75# and in < 6mth am down 64 so I have done really well BUT I think it's at a  cost to my hair.  Been on biotin x 6mths and just started Zinc 220 mg per the bariatric surgeon. Been taking that about 3 weeks. I THINK, cautiously, the loss seems to be slowing. I quit washing my hair more than every 3 days. I simply couldn't take seeing the amount of hair I took from the drain.  This started at the 4 mth mark.

I read about this but honestly didn't worry about it since I have always had an abundance of hair. In fact a ridiculous amount.  Now I'm at slightly panicked about going bold or being one of those women with very stringy hair. I know that's unkind of me, but we all have a vain spots, I've always had beautiful hair, no matter my size.  Maybe it's Gods way of making me more humble...And I know I will cope with whatever happens but I am anxious about it.

Seeing a new hair dresser tomorrow. Going to get the grey covered and guess I might have to go shorter for a while. 

Thanks for listening and the positive posts about the slowing and regrowth. 

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@annegirli found the easiest way to do a pic is pull it up on your tablet and screen shot it...that way you can adjust the size and then screen shot it (or use "snipping tool" for Microsoft) and it is usually much smaller of a size jpg

i didn't realize that the sleeve patients lost their hair, I thought it was only bypass patients!  Yikes!  I go thru cycles (months) now where my nails peel and my hair drops (no patches, just lots in drain, brush etc) and then it's fine...have used biotin for years. I have thin hair as it is (not super see thru like some can be but thin enough) I don't want to lose any extra. I had no idea. 

Edited by CJireh

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9 minutes ago, CJireh said:

 

i didn't realize that the sleeve patients lost their hair, I thought it was only bypass patients!  Yikes!  I go thru cycles (months) now where my nails peel and my hair drops (no patches, just lots in drain, brush etc) and then it's fine...have used biotin for years. I have thin hair as it is (not super see thru like some can be but thin enough) I don't want to lose any extra. I had no idea. 

Unfortunately large weightloss generally means hair loss will follow, regardless of how you achieve it. I went high protien low carbs for about 6 months prior to my revision and was well into the hair loss stage even before surgery. When you already have thin hair like I do, it's definitely a concern but unfortunately it's just something we need to try and work with in the short term.

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Good to know. I really thought it was from nutrient malabsorption and that is why the bypass pt has it. Learn something new everyday (well, here I am learning tons new!). Thanks for the info!

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10 hours ago, CJireh said:

Good to know. I really thought it was from nutrient malabsorption and that is why the bypass pt has it. Learn something new everyday (well, here I am learning tons new!). Thanks for the info!

It can be, not just protein is in the mix. Max your protein and vits every day. Hair loss prevention may take more protein than what your WLS team suggests for optimal healing and muscle sparing.

 

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Protein and biotin are great for re-growth but won't really do anything for prevention.  It's not caused by lack of nutrients but by the stress of major surgery.  That's why it happens in VSG and Bypass both, as well as other non-weight loss related major surgeries.  It also occurs after periods of prolonged stress completely unrelated to surgery.  It's called telogen effluvium and I had it happen twice in my life; once from extreme prolonged stress and once after VSG.  Of course there are many other reasons for thinning hair, like thyroid issues and other hormonal imbalances but if it starts abruptly a few months after surgery it is likely effluvium.  I am incredibly fortunate to have 4 times the hair I need so I actually enjoyed having thinner hair for once and used my thinner hair as an opportunity to grow my hair out.  I could never make it past summer without whacking it off because it never got long enough to pull it off my neck and it was like wearing a hibernating bear on my head all summer lol.  Didn't enjoy the process of it shedding everywhere and clogging drains but that was a minor annoyance in the grand scheme of things.  I understand the anxiety of those without thick hair; for so many of us hair has been our best feature while fat (at least in our own minds).  Like others have said a shorter cut with layers can help it look fuller until it regrows.  You'll have all these little short hairs all over when it starts regrowing which is interesting.

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In the grand scheme of things...true, that is the best way to look at it.  Minor annoyances that are just part of the process, and I can live with it.  I have had little short hairs of regrowth before and I always find them interesting and a good sign that is it coming back and in a regrowth phase!

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Thanks all.  In the last couple of weeks, the loss has definitely slowed. Still more than before surgery but at least it doesn't look like I'm flushing an entire mouse down the toilet. And I was blessed with ridiculously thick hair all my life so no one but myself and my hair dresser notices it.

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