A reader wrote to me to ask if it’s common to lose hair after a hysterectomy. She’d been losing a significant amount since her surgery and wondered if there could possibly be a connection.
The fact is that her hysterectomy very likely COULD be the cause of her hair loss issues. Here’s why…
Change to the Usual Cycle of Hair Growth
Hair goes through a typical cycle of growth, but a hysterectomy – or the medications prescribed to cope with the symptoms of menopause – can cause the cycle to speed up. This would lead to the hair falling out more rapidly.
The effect tends to be temporary and usually stops when either your body has recovered from the surgery or your medications are reduced or changed.
Imbalance of Hormones
Your body’s balance of hormones tends to change after a hysterectomy – and hormones can have a big impact on the hair – (see my Estrogen and Hair Loss page for more information).
Speak to your doctor if you feel this may be afecting you, as you may need HRT (Hormone Replacement Therapy).
Lack of Iron
After any surgery involving a loss of blood, you may need to consume extra iron. Iron deficiency is a well known cause of hair loss! Try to include more iron-rich foods in your diet – if you are severely deficient in iron, your doctor may prescribe iron supplements.
Some women experience hypothyroidism following a hysterectomy. Hypothyroidism – which can cause hair loss – is a condition where your body does not produce enough thyroid hormone (you can read more about hypothyroidism here).
Discuss your concern with your doctor, who can check your thyroid levels.