- Hair loss
Conducted at the Clinic for Dermatology and Dermatological Allergology of Friedrich Schiller University, Jena (Germany)
A receding hairline and premature hair loss affect not just men but also represent a worrisome development for women. With the onset of menopause, one out of three or four women will notice increased hair loss, which will ultimately lead to the thinning of hair if left untreated. Since the cause can not be remedied, women systematically need to prevent the symptoms. Because the treatment is used regularly, easy and safe application is very important. A liquid scalp treatment product, Plantur 39 Caffeine Tonic, was tested for subjective acceptance during a surveillance study.
Twenty women between the ages of 21 and 73 were included. The test subjects showed signs of beginning androgenetic alopecia or diffuse alopecia and complained about increased daily hair loss, which had already significantly reduced the hairline and the overall hair thickness. Twelve individuals had already experienced unsatisfactory results with other products that were either sold over the counter, exclusively in pharmacies, or were prescription drugs. Eight individuals had no previous product experience.
The product to be tested consisted of an active ingredient combination from zinc salts, niacin and caffeine. Recently, caffeine was successfully tested on the hair organ culture model in male hair roots based on its antiandrogen properties. The caffeine complex was complemented by the addition of a soy extract with a standardized share of phytoflavonoids such as genistein, a proven active ingredient in phytoestrogen replacement therapy.
The application of the test product covered four months. The description of the product effect was made with a self-assessment questionnaire and a clinically validated HAIRDEX questionnaire to describe the quality of life.
The Caffeine Tonic was applied to the scalp in the morning (after hair washing) and massaged into the scalp using the fingertips.
After four months, the post-marketing surveillance study was completed with 19 individuals; one person withdrew prematurely from the study due to lack of time. To assess the current hair loss, a scale with five degrees of severity was consulted. Subjectively, 15 test subjects noticed a distinct to very strong reduction in hair loss, which improved up to three degrees of severity in some cases. Three individuals rated their hair loss unchanged but on a low level. Only one person rated her hair loss worse after four months.
Eighteen individuals demonstrated a correspondingly high willingness to continue to use the test product. Only one person decided to refrain from continuing product application.
The subjective self-assessment by the test subjects was complemented by the evaluation of a clinical, standardized questionnaire on the quality of life (HAIRDEX). Based on 48 standardized questions, the test subjects were polled on the criteria of emotions, self-confidence, stigmatization, symptoms and functions.
The result of the evaluation was that the test subjects perceived an improvement of their situation with regard to all criteria during the application of the Plantur 39 Caffeine Tonic. The criteria of emotions, symptoms and quality of life showed a statistically significant improvement.
In contrast, the criteria of stigmatization and self-confidence showed stronger fluctuations regarding the degree of impact.
The Caffeine Tonic was very well tolerable. Symptoms such as scalp itch, dandruff and oily scalp decreased over the course of the test.
The HAIRDEX results confirm the high degree of satisfaction of the test subjects, 95% of whom said they would like to continue using the Caffeine Tonic.
Based on the experience of the test subjects, which had largely been unsatisfactory, their expectations for success or skepticism was rated relatively high. As a result, it was a positive surprise that, despite the very short observational period of four months, important quality of life parameters (emotions, symptoms and functions) improved significantly.
The subjective assessment of daily hair loss, which can be a major cause of stress and depression, clearly improved during the comparably short application period.
The application of the Plantur 39 Caffeine Tonic was rated positively by a large majority of the participants in this surveillance study. Excellent tolerability on the scalp and the reduction of typical scalp problems such as oily scalp, scalp itch and taut sensations also contributed to the high product acceptance.
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