Excessive Hairiness (Hirsutism)
What is excessive hairiness?
Excessive hairiness, also known as hirsutism, is characterized by abnormal hair growth
on areas of skin that are not normally hairy. Although the condition can affect both
men and women, it is usually more bothersome to women.
What causes excessive hairiness?
Excessive hairiness tends to run in families, especially in families of Mediterranean,
Middle Eastern, and South Asian descent. The excessive hairiness in children and women
may be caused by pituitary or adrenal glands disorders. In addition, women may develop
excessive hairiness after menopause. Anabolic steroids or corticosteroids, and certain
medicines, also may cause excessive hairiness.
How is excessive hairiness diagnosed?
Although diagnosis of excessive hairiness can be diagnosed with a medical history
and physical exam. Finding the underlying cause for the condition may include blood
Treatment for excessive hairiness
Specific treatment for excessive hairiness will be discussed with you by your healthcare
provider based on:
Your age, overall health, and medical history
Extent of the condition
Cause of the condition
Your tolerance for specific medicines, procedures, and therapies
Expectation for the course of the condition
Your opinion or preference
Treatment may include:
Removing the hair by shaving, plucking, waxing, depilatories, electrolysis, bleaching,
or laser surgery
Medicine (to control any underlying endocrine disorder)
Eflornithine is a prescription cream specifically used to slow down the growth of
facial hair. It starts to work as soon as 4 to 8 weeks after treatment is begun. The
medicine's possible side effects include skin irritation, a stinging sensation, and