Men with androgenetic alopecia (AGA) who undergo hair transplantation surgery have less loneliness, anxiety, and depression than before surgery, according to findings from a study published in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology.
A total of 35 men with AGA who had hair transplantation surgery participated in a 1-year follow-up from 2021 to 2022 at a clinic in Tehran, Iran. The participants ranged from 25 to 70 years of age.
The University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA) Loneliness Scale was used to assess loneliness, and the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) was used to evaluate anxiety and depression. The loneliness, anxiety, and depression questionnaires were administered to participants at the start of their stay, before the hair transplant procedure. After 1 year, the questionnaires were administered again.
The patients had an average age of 39.88 years, and 51.42% were married at the time. The mean (SD) pre-operative HADS score was 8 (4.88), and the mean postoperative HADS score was 4.68 (2.44). The mean (SD) pre-operative UCLA scale score was 43.05 (4.07), and the mean postoperative UCLA scale score was 38.57 (3.44).
A statistically significant difference was observed between pre- and postoperative hair transplantation for anxiety and depression in HADS (P <.001). A statistically significant difference in loneliness on the UCLA scale also was observed (P <.001).
The average sense of loneliness among married persons decreased by 2.38 points on the UCLA scale (41.94-39.56), and the average feeling of loneliness in single participants decreased by 6.7 points on the UCLA scale (44.23-37.53) after surgery.
The investigators also found a statistically significant association between educational attainment and loneliness, anxiety, and depression. The average loneliness score decreased by 1.37 points in individuals with less than a bachelor’s degree, 4.64 points in those with a bachelor’s degree, and 7.7 points in those with an upper bachelor’s degree. Also, the average anxiety and sadness scores in individuals with less than a bachelor’s degree decreased by 0.91 points, by 4 points in those with a bachelor’s degree, and by 5 points in those with an upper bachelor’s degree.
Study limitations include the small sample size of only men with AGA. In addition, a nonalopecia control group was not included to compare the psychological state of patients with AGA and control individuals.
Investigators believe that their findings support data from previous studies “demonstrating that hair restoration surgery may help to prevent and even repair psychosocial issues associated with AGA.” They continued, “The findings of this research imply that hair transplantation may help afflicted men cope with some of the social and psychological repercussions of hair loss,” the study authors commented.
Nilforoushzadeh MA, Golparvaran M. An assessment for measuring loneliness, anxiety, and depression in male patients with androgenetic alopecia undergoing hair transplantation surgery: a before-after study. J Cosmet Dermatol. Published online October 10, 2022. doi:10.1111/jocd.15452