Hypotrichosis is the medical term for when there’s not enough hair on the head or other areas of the body where hair usually grows. It also applies when eyelashes are too short, thin, or do not grow at all. There are treatments for eyelash growth but not other forms of hypotrichosis.
Lack of eyelashes may be genetic. Some people may notice that their lashes thin as they age or because of hormonal changes like menopause, chronic stress or irritation.
There are two options for hypotrichosis: Bimatoprost and Latisse. Both are applied using a one-time applicator directly on the upper eyelid, similar to how you might apply eyeliner.
Treatment for hypotrichosis should only be applied to the upper eyelash area. On other areas, it may cause unwanted hair growth or skin discoloration. These medications should not be applied to the lower lid—the medication will naturally spread there as you blink.
It can take several weeks to notice eyelash growth and up to 16 weeks to see full effects.
It is thought that medications like Latisse and Bimatoprost cause the hair follicles to move from their resting phase into an active growth phase. They may also increase the number of eyelash hairs that are produced.
It’s important to know that eyelash growth only lasts as long as these medications are used. Eyelashes will likely return to their previous appearance if you stop using these medications.
The medications used to promote eyelash growth are the same medications used to reduce eye pressure in patients with glaucoma.
So tell your medical provider if you use any other eye drops or if you have eye conditions. Do not take these medications without a prescription or without consulting your medical provider.
Some people report eye itching, redness or discomfort when using these medications. Bimatoprost and Latisse can also cause skin darkening in the area where they are applied. This is usually reversible, meaning that the side effects go away when the medication is stopped.
For those who take this medication in eyedrop form for glaucoma, months or years of use may cause darkening of the iris (the colored part of your eye). This risk is very low if used correctly and only applied to the eyelid as directed.
Consultation: A virtual medical consultation for hypotrichosis costs $15.00, which is lower than most doctor co-pays. Currently we don’t submit medical consultation claims to insurance companies. But you can use insurance for any resulting prescriptions at your pharmacy.
Medication: Dr. B only charges for the medical consultation. When medications are prescribed, we let you choose the most affordable or convenient pharmacy to get the prescription filled. Medication prices will vary depending on your insurance coverage and whether the drug is a brand or generic.
At this time, we don’t submit medical consultation claims to insurance companies. But you can use insurance for any resulting prescriptions at your pharmacy.
We’ll send you a reminder for an online assessment when it’s time for your next refill.
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