Do statins cause alopecia?

· London Medicines Information Service

  • As hair loss is a generally accepted male characteristic, drug-induced alopecia may be mistaken as part of a natural process and therefore under reported.
  •  There have been reports of alopecia during use of all UK licensed statins but there is insufficient data to confidently attribute hair loss to statin use.
  • Case studies suggest an association but as yet there is insufficient information to suggest a mechanism, make comparisons of the individual incidence of alopecia between the various statins or propose a class effect.
  • The greatest number of reports of alopecia is for simvastatin but this may be related to a greater market share or length of time on market.
  • Clinical judgement based on the medical history of the patient and their clinical status should guide the appropriate actions to be taken.
AtorvastatinCardiovascular system disordersFluvastatinPravastatinQ&ARosuvastatinSimvastatinSkin disorders