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Study Suggests Early Hair Loss May Reduce Prostate Cancer Risk

Study Suggests Early Hair Loss May Reduce Prostate Cancer Risk

updated

Early onset male pattern baldness may be linked to a reduced chance of prostate cancer, according to a recent study. The findings contradict those of previous studies, but researchers say the latest work included relevant data not previously considered.

Researchers studied the medical records of nearly 2,000 Seattle-area men, roughly half of whom were diagnosed with prostate cancer between 2002 and 2005. As reported in the online journal Cancer Epidemiology, they concluded that those who began to develop male pattern baldness at the hairline or on the top of the head by age 30 were 29 percent less likely to develop prostate cancer later in life.

For some researchers, the latest study, conducted at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (FHCRC) in Seattle, further confuses an issue that was already subject to disagreement. They point to previous work that has either suggested that male pattern baldness indicates an increased likelihood of prostate cancer, or that there is no relationship between the two conditions.

The FHCRC team feels their research was more comprehensive, since theirs was the first study that not only looked at the state of baldness around the time subjects were diagnosed with prostate cancer, but also determined at what age the men began to lose their hair.

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