A recent hair analysis study of French Soccer players showed that 7 out of 32 were taking banned anabolic steroids which were undetected by routine urine tests.
Trichologist Dr Shahid Shamsher talks about how hair analysis can often tell us what is wrong with the body, things undetected otherwise.
Why is hair analysis so effective?
Hair has a very long term memory. The protein in each hair fiber reflects the composition of the body tissues permanently. For example from doing an oxygen isotope analysis in a hair fiber, we can come to know the various waters the person has been exposed to from which we can tell the various geographical areas the person has traveled to lately.
What would one learn from such an analysis?
It is a very useful screening method for the of presence various toxic substances which are known to be deleterious to the health, which the person might have imbibed after exposure to air, dust, soil, water etc. While these substances can also be detected in urine, their presence there is often temporary. Hair on the other hand retains the presence of these harmful agents even long after the exposure is over and therefore gives a very accurate picture of the past. For example nearly 200 years after Napoleons death, his hair analysis revealed that he might have died from Arsenic poisoning rather than stomach cancer as it was previously believed.
How does it help in hair loss conditions?
Hair analysis helps in finding out a more accurate reason for hair loss. For example recently we had a 25 year old woman, whose hair and scalp analysis revealed an unusual pattern of hair loss for her age. On taking her history it was then found that she had an abortion last year as well, which also remained unexplained. Further testing then revealed that she had a thyroid disorders which remained undiagnosed. Had the thyroid condition not be found, she probably would have undergone more such abortions and progressive hair loss. Similarly there are numerous such cases where the hair analysis reveals a pattern of excess smoking and alcohol consumption, sometimes even when the patient does not want to tell that to the doctor.
Dr Shahid Shamsher is a leading Trichologist certified from UK, Australia & India. Practicing since 27 years in the field of Trichology, even today he consults every patient personally himself rather than leave it to assistants. He can be reached on 080 42067474 / 75.