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Obesity and Low-Grade Inflammation among Young Finnish Men with Early-Onset Alopecia

Hirsso P.a, b · Rajala U.a · Hiltunen L.a, c · Jokelainen J.a, b · Keinänen-Kiukaanniemi S.a, c · Näyhä S.a
aUniversity of Oulu, Department of Public Health Science and General Practice, bUnit of General Practice, Oulu University Hospital, and cOulu Health Center, Oulu, Finland Dermatology 2007;214:125–129 (DOI:10.1159/000098570)


Background: Previous investigations have revealed an association of androgenetic alopecia (AGA), especially in younger subjects with severe early-onset AGA, with ischemic heart disease. Objective: To examine the possible association between early-onset alopecia and low-grade inflammation measured by high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) that has been recommended for the assessment of the cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk. Methods: The study population consisted of young men (n = 727, aged 25–34 years) participating in a national survey. The grade of alopecia was assessed by a trained nurse using the Norwood/Hamilton Classification Scale. Results: Men with moderate to extensive alopecia (17%) had a higher body mass index and larger waist, upper arm, hip and waist circumference than those with little to no alopecia (p < 0.05), and statistically insignificant differences were seen in the waist-to-hip circumference ratio (WHR), diastolic blood pressure and hs-CRP. With increasing hs-CRP, the mean WHR increased, but only among men with moderate to extensive alopecia (p = 0.043). Conclusion: Our findings show a relation between moderate to extensive alopecia and low-grade inflammation – a predictor of a future CVD – especially combined with central obesity, among men younger than 35 years.


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