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Doctors and stylists help Northern Nevadans with hair loss after COVID-19

This is a recurring recording of KOLO 8 News Now at 10.
Published: Jan. 21, 2022 at 1:04 AM PST
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - Beauty salons in Reno and Sparks have seen many clients come in with the same problem during the pandemic, hair loss.

At Guys and Dolls Beauty Salon in Sparks, hairstylist Claudia Marmolejo is very familiar with this side effect. Not only has she seen more than a handful of clients with this issue, but experienced it herself.

“It was huge chunks, I think it was half of what I have,” said Marmolejo.

Her hair loss started just weeks after having COVID-19 and for around six months she wore a lot of ponytails and hats.

“Hair is one of the things that women care about the most so I was like, ‘I’m going to have no hair left,” said Marmolejo. “Psychologically, I was traumatized for a while.”

According to board-certified dermatologist at Nevada Center for Dermatology, Dr. Cindy Lamerson, hair loss like this is called Telogen Effluvium and has been present in men and women.

“The body does this because it experiences a lot of trauma with the Covid infection, especially a severe one, and the body kind of shuts down non-essential elements like hair growth,” said Dr. Lamerson.

She adds unless you have a hereditary condition, the hair will grow back, but it can take a long time.

While you wait, Marmolejo recommends taking vitamins and using deep conditioning treatments like Olaplex. She also suggests weaves, hair extensions and avoiding stress.

For those not so patient, Dr. Lamerson says there are a few options.

“Using Rogaine to try to get more hairs in the growth phase,” said Dr. Lamerson. “The other thing is platelet and rich plasma injections, where we take the platelets, we activate them and we inject them in the scalp area with the plasma and that has actually shown some promise.”

Normal hair loss is around 100 strands. If you notice drastic changes there are doctors and stylists you can consult to find the right solution for you.

Dr. Lamerson says this symptom has been less present among those vaccinated, who may have contracted COVID.

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