Side Effect and Life-Long Use Concerns Are Barriers to Minoxidil Use
Main reason for stopping minoxidil is lack of effectiveness
By Dermsquared Editorial Team | October 19, 2022
For patients with hair loss, barriers to minoxidil use include fear of side effects, concern for life-long use, and lack of effectiveness, according to a study published online in the October issue of the Journal of Drugs in Dermatology .
Dillon Nussbaum, from George Washington University in Washington, D.C., and colleagues examined attitudes, perceptions, and barriers to care related to the use of topical minoxidil. Ninety-three surveys were completed by patients presenting with a complaint of hair loss, specifically androgenetic alopecia.
The researchers found that most patients (79.6 percent) were aware of minoxidil, although only 15.1 percent and 20.4 percent of those aware were currently using minoxidil or had used it in the past, respectively. The average satisfaction score was 2.87 ± 1.18 on a Likert scale of 1 to 5 for all current and past users, with current users reporting higher satisfaction than past users (3.50 0.65 versus 2.22 ± 1.22). The most common reason reported for never trying minoxidil was concern for unwanted side effects, followed by cost concerns and concern for life-long use (39 percent, 29 percent, and 27 percent, respectively). The main reason cited for stopping minoxidil was lack of effectiveness, as reported by 13 of 19 respondents. Of these 13 respondents, nine reported using minoxidil for less than six months and four for at least six to 12 months. Significant concerns for previous users included cost (47 percent) and life-long use (32 percent). Only 21 percent said they had experienced unwanted side effects.
"It should be stressed to patients that it may take up to a year to see the maximum results of minoxidil use," the authors write.