A recent study by Far Eastern memorial hospital in Taiwan has shown that cigarette smoking can contribute to male hair loss. Male pattern baldness is considered by scientists to be a hereditary problem caused by the male sex hormones. Male baldness varies among different races and Asian men are less likely to become bald as they age compared to Caucasians. Researchers became aware of the link between smoking and baldness after conducting a survey of over 700 Taiwanese men with an average age of 65. The survey collected data on the age when the men started losing their hair, the risk factors possibly associated with hair loss, and the smoking history.
The results of the survey found that smoking led to significantly more baldness even after taking other risk factors into account. Those who smoked 20 cigarettes a day or more were more than twice as likely to have moderate or severe hair loss than those who had never smoked.
The risk of hair loss for Asian men increased with advancing age but still remained lower than the average risk for Caucasian men. Researchers believe that smoking may damage the micro-circulation that supplies blood to the follicles and that early hair loss in a smoker may be indicative of serious damage elsewhere in the body.