The Captain vs. Male Pattern Baldness: Round One

As I mentioned in yesterday’s blog, I have decided to address the fact that my hair loss is increasing at an alarming rate.

I have always known this day would come.  My dad has been bald my entire life.  Baldness goes back for generations in both of my parents’ families.  Baldness is in my genes, this was bound to crop-up.

The chrome-doming started to be noticeable a little before I turned 25.  Since then I’ve slowly but steadily been thinning out around the crown on my noggin.  And while I’ve known that it was happening, it really didn’t affect me much.  From the front my hair looks fine.  I rarely see the back of my head, so it has been easy to ignore for the most part.

I’ve been thinking more about my balding lately for two main reasons.  First, turning 30 has started to put my own aging into perspective.  The thirties as a decade seem to imply a certain level of vanity that the twenties do not.  Simply put, people in their thirties are required to maintain their appearance more than people in their twenties.  It now takes more work for me to look the same.

Strangely, the other thing that has focused my thoughts on balding is health insurance.  For the first time in my life, I have reliable and affordable health insurance through my job.  This means that medical options are a viable option for really the first time ever.

I’ve been merging turning 30 and health insurance in my mind for the last couple of weeks, and it has brought me to the same convergence point.  I have decided to start taking Propecia .

This is a bit of a reversal on my previous feelings on hair growth treatments.  When I was a kid, I watched my father battle against hair-loss.  He failed miserably, and I vowed that I would never embarrass myself over hair loss.1

In my twenties I briefly considered some type of hair-loss treatment but ultimately decided against it.  I tried Rogaine for a week and did not like it.  It required me to put a smelly cream in my hair for four hours twice a day.  Not only did that seem like a lot of work, it was very expensive.  After that, I swore off hair-growth remedies for a number of years.

About a year ago, I quietly started to rethink my position.  I had heard from a couple of acquaintances positive things about Propecia.   After a little research, I discovered that there were actual clinical trials showing that the drug is moderately effect for some men.  Recently I discovered that there is a generic form of the pill that is considerably cheaper and just as effective.

After careful consideration, I decided to give it a shot.  While there are no guarantees, it’s not really going to hurt.  So why not?  About the only side effect is that it can lead to fertility problems.  Seeing as I’m not planning on having kids, I actually look at this as a positive.

I obtained a prescription and I picked up the pills yesterday.  So today officially begins

The Captain’s Hair-Growth Challenge

Here is the starting point.  As you can see, my hair-loss is generally in the crown area.  Supposedly Propecia works the best at regrowing hair in this area.  So my patch of thinning hair will be going head-to-head against this little badass.

It’s even odds on who whether the pill will triumph over my bald spot.  I’m staying optimistic and betting on Propecia.  But even if the pill loses miserably I’ll be fine with the outcome.

I’ll be posting regular updates regarding the battle of Medicine vs. Genetics.  A battle has just begun, and my entire head is at stake!  Who will emerge victorious?!?  Stay tuned to find out!

Ciao,

The Captain

1  In retrospect, I think that I was adverse to my dad’s wicked-bad-comb-over more than anything.

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