November 15, 1995 in Nation/World

Rate Of Hair Loss Linked To Heart Risk

New York Times

It may not be how much hair a man has lost from his head but how fast he lost it that predicts his chances of suffering a heart attack, according to new findings from the landmark Framingham Heart Study.

The new study, published in the current issue of The American Journal of Epidemiology, recorded the rate at which baldness progressed and followed the men for up to 30 years to determine their risk of developing coronary heart disease.

The extent of baldness was not associated with any heart problems among the 2,017 men in Framingham, Mass., in whom baldness was evaluated in 1956 and 1962.

But among the 433 men whose degree of baldness was recorded for both years, those who lost their hair most rapidly “showed significantly elevated rates” in heart disease and cardiovascular deaths.

The researchers suggested a common factor, like a genetic link, a higher testosterone level or a deficiency of nitric oxide, resulted in both rapid hair loss and an increase in coronary risk.

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