A 26-year-old female asked:
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can hirsutism include a sudden, excessive growth of vellus hairs, with no male pattern of distribution? or is it solely terminal hair in male pattern?

2 doctor answers
Dr. Emily Altman
27 years experience Dermatology
Hirsutism: Hirsutism is a term that refers to growth of terminal hairs in women in areas that normally don't have hair or have vellus hair, such as chin, chest, abdomen, etc. There are some medications, such as oral or topical Minoxidil among others and certain health conditions that cam cause sudden excessive vellus hair growth. Please have it evaluated by your dermatologist.
Answered on Jun 30, 2014
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Dr. Michael Fisher
31 years experience Dermatology
Hirsutism: The major sign of hirsutism is coarse and pigmented body hair, appearing on the body where women don't commonly have hair — primarily the face, chest and back. When excessively high androgen levels cause hirsutism, other signs may develop over time, a process called virilization.
Answered on Apr 7, 2013
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