medical condition:


What is Hirsutism?

Hirsutism refers to the excessive growth of coarse, dark hair in areas typically associated with male-pattern hair growth in women. While body hair is normal, hirsutism involves an abnormal amount of terminal hair in areas like the face, chest, and back.

Spotting the Signs: Identifying Symptoms of Hirsutism


Recognizing the early signs of hirsutism is crucial for seeking timely diagnosis and treatment. Key indicators include:

  • New or increased hair growth on the face, chest, abdomen, back, or thighs
  • Darkening or thickening of existing hair in these areas
  • Development of male-pattern baldness
  • Acne
  • Irregular menstrual cycles
  • Deepening voice

Affected Demographics: Who Does Hirsutism Impact?

Hirsutism can affect women of all ethnicities and ages, though it primarily presents during adolescence or early adulthood due to hormonal fluctuations associated with puberty and pregnancy. Studies suggest that up to 10% of women may experience some degree of hirsutism, with varying levels of severity. It’s important to note that hirsutism can also be a symptom of underlying health conditions, highlighting the importance of seeking professional evaluation and diagnosis.

Young woman with acne problem near mirror in bathroom

Visualizing Hirsutism: What Does it Look Like?

The visual presentation of hirsutism can vary significantly between individuals. Some women may experience a few scattered dark hairs, while others may have extensive, coarse hair growth across multiple areas. It’s important to remember that individual experiences vary, and the severity of symptoms does not define the need for diagnosis and treatment.

Root Causes in Women: Understanding the Origins of Hirsutism

Several factors can contribute to hirsutism in women. The most common cause is an androgen excess, where the body produces higher-than-normal levels of male hormones. This can be due to:

  • Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS): A hormonal disorder affecting ovulation and characterized by increased androgen levels.
  • Congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH): A genetic condition leading to the overproduction of steroid hormones, including androgens.
  • Cushing’s syndrome: A hormonal disorder caused by excess cortisol production, which can indirectly stimulate androgen production.
  • Ovarian tumors: Less common, but certain ovarian tumors may produce androgens.
  • Medications: Some medications, like steroids or certain epilepsy medications, can contribute to hirsutism as a side effect.

Link Between Hirsutism and PCOS

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a leading cause of hirsutism in women, affecting up to 70% of PCOS patients. The hormonal imbalances associated with PCOS, specifically elevated androgen levels, trigger excessive hair growth. If you experience hirsutism alongside other PCOS symptoms like irregular periods, acne, or weight gain, consulting a dermatologist for diagnosis and discussing treatment options with your gynecologist is crucial.

Diagnostic Approaches: How is Hirsutism Diagnosed?

Diagnosing hirsutism often involves a comprehensive approach by a dermatologist. This may include:

  • Detailed medical history and physical examination
  • Physical Examination: Assessing the distribution and pattern of hair growth.
  • Medical History: Exploring family history, menstrual irregularities, and other relevant information.
  • Blood Tests: Measuring hormone levels to identify any imbalances contributing to hirsutism.
  • Pelvic ultrasound to examine the ovaries for PCOS signs
  • Other tests depending on suspected underlying conditions

Treatment Strategies: Options for Managing Hirsutism

Effective management and treatment include various approaches:

  • Hormonal therapy: Medications like birth control pills or anti-androgen medications can help regulate hormone levels and reduce hair growth.
  • Laser hair removal: A safe and effective option for long-term hair reduction, targeting the hair follicle at its root to prevent regrowth.
  • Electrolysis: Another permanent hair removal option, it uses electrical current to destroy individual hair follicles.
  • Topical medications: Creams or lotions containing anti-androgens can be helpful for mild cases.
  • Lifestyle changes: Managing weight, addressing stress, and maintaining a healthy diet can positively impact hormonal balance and reduce hair growth.

Benefits of Laser Hair Removal for Hirsutism

Understanding the benefits and considerations of laser hair removal as a viable option for managing hirsutism:

  • Precise targeting: Lasers can target specific areas with unwanted hair growth, leaving surrounding skin unaffected.
  • Long-lasting results: With proper treatment, laser hair removal can significantly reduce hair growth for years, offering a long-term solution.
  • Reduced ingrown hairs: Laser hair removal can help prevent ingrown hairs, a common concern for people with hirsutism.
  • Improved confidence: By reducing unwanted hair, laser hair removal can significantly boost confidence and self-esteem.

Schedule a Consultation

At Ayana Dermatology & Aesthetics, we understand hirsutism’s impact on your life. We offer comprehensive consultations to discuss your concerns, evaluate your needs, and recommend the most effective treatment options, including laser hair removal. Schedule an appointment today to learn more about how we can help you manage hirsutism and other medical conditions.

Customer Love: Our Reviews Speak for Themselves

Helen P.
Google review
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I had a great experience at Ayana Dermatology! Dr. Levi is a fantastic physician. She was very kind to me and thorough in her exam. You can clearly see she has a passion for her career and patients. Her clinic is beautiful and clean. Staff was kind and welcoming. I am happy to have found my dermatologist!
Nicole A.
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My experience at Ayana has been nothing short of amazing! I came to Dr. Levi for hair loss, and she took the time to really listen to me and discussed all treatment options with me in detail. Not only do I feel cared for by everyone at the office, but I have also seen significant improvement in my hair growth using Dr. Levi's medical advice and treatment approach. Go to Ayana if you want results and the best care in South FL!
Allan h.
facebook review
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Dr. Levi and staff were true professionals. Great results and competitive rates. What I thought would take months for my skin to heal was almost gone in only 1 week. Will definitely come back!
Amanda P.
Google review
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So blessed to have a AYANA DERMATOLOGY in Wilton Manors!! Good bye med spas - overpriced and lack quality control. Dr. Cherise Mizrahi-Levi Is generous with her knowledge and time. I love learning about how to care for my skin without the med spa gimmicks.
Bernard R.
yelp review
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I am from Miami Beach and now live in Orlando. I am frequently in Fort Lauderdale because that is where my kids live. I have been to many dermatologists over the years. Dr. Levi is by far the best dermatologist I have ever seen. Her attention to detail is incredible. She is highly intelligent and is great at communicating what is going on. I can't put into words how great of a doctor she is. highly recommend her!
Theresa S.
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Amazing service from first call to end of appointments. Been here several times for different things and they are consistently professional and friendly!
Therese N.
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Dr. Levi and her staff were attentive and tried to help with my concerns. Will be seeing her again in about three weeks for a followup.
Kirsten b.
yelp review
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Dr. Levi is amazing. She takes the time to understand your problem and then works with you to improve your condition. You don't feel rushed and you are definitely listened to. Her follow up is fantastic, taking time to call you personally with lab results.
Talia N.
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The best derm experience I’ve ever had, truly. I felt well taken care of by the entire team. Dr. Levi is warm, caring, and incredibly knowledgeable regarding all aspects of dermatology. She took her time to explain everything from A-Z so I didn’t leave with any worries or concerns. I highly recommend this practice! Experienced skin care professionals, Amazing results, Expert facials, Licensed skin care professionals, Professional products, Beautiful results.
Mirit g.
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Thank you for the knowledge, explanation and special treatment Dr. Cherise M. Levi you're the best! Beautiful place, so peaceful & great team! Definitely going to see you soon again 🙂
Elizabeth K.
Facebook review
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Wonderful, caring doctor. Takes her time with patients. Never rushes. Listens to patient & makes informed recommendations. Great support staff. Makes good recommendations for skin care products. Will continue to go to Ayana Dermatology for skin cancer checks.
Ivan D.
yelp review
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Beautiful office great staff very professional the doctor comes with a magnificent history in the industry in NYC she makes you feel very comfortable and i have total confidence in her decisions and advice so glad i found her!

Frequently asked questions

While it may not always be reversible, effective management can significantly reduce symptoms.

Yes, hirsutism can indicate underlying hormonal imbalances or conditions like PCOS.

Discomfort varies, but many find the procedure tolerable with minimal pain.

Results may vary, but noticeable improvements are often observed after several sessions.

While hirsutism itself may not impact fertility, underlying conditions like PCOS could.

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