Classification of Baldness
There are two classification systems for baldness. Typical male pattern baldness, or androgenic alopecia, follows a fairly well defined pattern.Unfortunately, female baldness if more difficult to characterize though a system has been proposed and is most commonly used.
Hamilton Norwood Classification
Hamilton, an anatomist, recorded his observations of more than 300 men and graded their patterns of hair loss in 1949. Dr. O’tar Norwood, a dermatologist and distinguished hair transplant surgeon, expanded Hamilton’s classification after conducting his own study of 1,000 men. The Norwood classification, published in 1975, is the most widely used classification for hair loss in men. It defines two major patterns and several less common types. As Norwood observed, thinning starts in both temples as well as the crown/vertex and slowly progresses to encompass the entire top of the scalp.This progression is noted in Norwood's classification which is depicted below.
Type I: No or very minimal hairline recession along the anterior border in the frontotemporal region.
In addition, Types II through V can also be designated with a Type A variant. The major features of the type A variant are: 1) the entire anterior hairline border recedes in unison without leaving the midfrontal peninsula of hair and 2) there is no simultaneous balding of the vertex. The two minor features are 1) scattered sparse hairs frequently persisting in the entire area of balding and 2) the horseshoe shaped fringe of hair that remains on the sides and back tends to be wider and reaches higher on the head. These variants exist only in about 3% of the population studies.
Type IIA: The hairline is anterior to the coronal plane 2 cm anterior to the external auditory meatus.
Ludwig Classification of Female Hair Loss
The Ludwig classification is the most commonly used for female hair loss. There are three main classes each with increaseing hair loss.
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