What is the Hamilton - Norwood Scale?

Dr. Oguz Kayiran
Medical Reviewer

The Hamilton-Norwood Scale is used to measure male pattern baldness. It illustrates the levels of hair loss with a visual diagram, helping to diagnose and best treat hair loss in men at every stage.

The scale breaks hair loss down into 7 distinct stages, which are:

  • Stage 1: This stage is the very beginning of hair loss. At this point, the balding is not significant and may not be as noticeable as further stages. However, when this stage is reached, it is the first sign of balding that will continue to progress.
  • Stage 2: After stage 1 is exceeded, the hairline begins to recede more noticeably. This specifically occurs at the front of the hairline, concentrated in the temple area. Stage 2 of male pattern baldness begins to transform the existing hairline into what is referred to as the “mature hairline”.
  • Stage 3: At stage 3 of hair loss, the hairline further recedes in the temple areas. During this stage, balding becomes much more significant and visibly shifts the hairline into a shape resembling a U, M, or V. There is an alternative variation of this stage, known as the stage 3 vertex. This occurs when the hairline itself does not progress from stage 2, but further balding occurs on the top of the head instead.
  • Stage 4: This stage is classified by a receding hairline that surpasses the level of stage 2, with the addition of little to no hair on the top of the head. The sides of the head are typically still connected by remaining hair between the bald spots at this time.
  • Stage 5: The balding pattern continues at stage 5, with the remaining hair around the sides of the head becoming more sparse than in stage 4.
  • Stage 6: The hairline recession around the temples joins with the bald area on the top of the head at stage 6. During this time, any remaining band of hair around the head may disappear or become significantly lighter in preparation for full balding.
  • Stage 7: Stage 7 is classified by a thin and sparse layer of hair going around the head only. There is almost no hair at the top of the head in this stage. This is considered the most severe level of hair loss, near full baldness.

The Norwood Scale provides a tool to help a medical team determine what you can do to reverse existing baldness or prevent future hair loss. It quantifies male hair loss into distinct measurements that are consistent around the world.

What causes male pattern hair loss?

Balding is something that can occur at any age for many reasons. Various factors can contribute to male pattern hair loss. Many cases of male pattern baldness are hereditary, having to do with genetic makeup. Balding may come naturally for a lot of men with age, depending on family history.

Diet and nutrition also play a large role in hair loss or retention as the years go by. Deficiencies in vitamins and nutrients may result in hair thinning or loss over time. Medical conditions such as cancer, alopecia areata, Hashimoto's thyroiditis, and grave disease also have similar effects. Furthermore, infections of the scalp area directly or sexually transmitted infections can also contribute to male pattern balding.

Tips to prevent hair loss

Hair loss is not something that is desired at any point in life. The experience can affect confidence and interfere with daily activities. As a result, it is best to find a prevention solution for further hair loss.

There are several ways to prevent future hair loss, before or after the signs have presented themselves. These include medications, various natural remedies, and hair implant procedures.

Minoxidil and Finasteride are the most popular medications to treat hair loss today. Natural remedies from hair oils to herbal teas may help prevent further hair loss, while hair transplants may be needed for excessive balding.

Final Words

When it comes to hair loss and male pattern balding, it is best to get a hair transplant in some cases. While you can take measures to prevent hair thinning and loss, getting implants may be the best option for balding that has progressed towards stage 7.

Easy Hair Hub offers a free quote for potential new clients. Reach out today for a complimentary estimate and customized treatment options for your hair transplant procedure.

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