The Norwood Scale, also known as the Hamilton-Norwood Scale, is the general name of a classification system that measures the degree of baldness in men. Male pattern baldness is rated between I and VII on this scale which was first published in 1952. James Hamilton prepared this scale, then in 1975 Dr. O'tar Norwood developed this scale and brought it to the world of science. This scale, which is often used by doctors today, has been approved as a standard hair loss classification system. It has great importance in determining the level of baldness and knowing the treatment that will be applied.
What Is the Norwood Scale?
As mentioned in the introduction of our article, this scale is a method that divides male-type hair loss into more than one group. Created with the names of James Hamilton, its first creator, and O'tar Norwood, the name of its later developer, this scale is often known by the name Hamilton-Norwood. It is often used by doctors to measure the degree of baldness, determine the treatments that will be applied to baldness, and discuss how much treatment will work. The classification scale most used by researchers, doctors, and hair transplant specialists is the Norwood Scale. This scale is also used to understand genetic hair loss and to be included in the classification group from 1 to 7. It is important not only to treat male hair loss but also to know the severity of androgenetic alopecia, known as AGA, to assess the relationship between prostate cancer and coronary artery disease. If a person experiencing hair loss refers to a doctor or hair transplant specialist, it is possible to analyze how much hair is lost and which type of Group will be included by associating this level of hair loss with the scale. Thanks to this scale, you can both learn and group your own level of hair loss and master the stages of androgenetic alopecia more.
What Does the Norwood Scale Measure?
We know that the classification system that best measures and rates the degree of male pattern baldness is called The Norwood Scale. The scientists who invented and developed this scale divided the scale into 7 categories. This classification is prepared according to changes in the hair structure of men and similar aspects of the points where genetic hair loss converges. Spills on this scale are classified between Type1 and type7 and begin with the spill in the forehead and peak area. Developed in the 1950s, this scale has enabled the evaluation of clinical tests and research for about 60-70 years from that period to the present day to be carried out according to a certain standard. If we look at the stages of the Norwood Scale.
Type1 (Invisible Shedding)
Type 1 shedding or, in other words, minimal shedding is usually seen at a young age, but can also start at an old age, although rarely. Since it is the first chapter of male-type hair loss, noticeable hair loss and thinning do not occur. If you do not care much about your hair, it is very difficult to notice that your hair is falling out at this stage. Besides, if you genetically have baldness in your family, or if you are in a condition where you are facing a metabolic disorder (such as anemia), the stage in which you do not care about your hair is considered the Type 1 stage. As with all diseases, early detection is very important in this case. Genetically, hair loss cannot be overcome, but in the event of early detection with methods such as the Norwood Scale, this loss can be slowed down along with the use of the necessary precautions and medications.
Type2 (noticeable shedding)
At this stage, it is the stage where hair loss begins from the area called the front hairline or the forehead area. People who are faced with a genetic hair loss problem usually experience awareness during the period of Type 2. In this type of shedding, symmetrical openings occur on the two eyebrows. Starting from the temple parts, although slight spills began to become evident. Some individuals may experience slight dilution at the junction of the forehead and hair. In fact, some people only have a regression in the hairline, while some people only have a regression in the temporal side.
Type3 (Initial Level Shedding)
The first stage of baldness, which can be noticed from the outside, is type3. Although there is a noticeable regression on the temporal side, the forehead is opened by 1-2 cm. This stage is often seen in men who are usually in their early 30s. At this stage, when hair loss has accelerated to a significant extent, openings in the crown area have not yet begun. This stage is a stage that requires treatment with the control of a doctor. Because, if the shedding rate cannot be controlled, type 4 level baldness will begin to form in a short period.
Tip4 (Mild Baldness)
The type 4 stage is a stage in which the hair is visibly and palpably diluted from both the forehead and the crown area. Genetically, people who experience hair loss can reach the level of Type 4 within 3-4 years. Although all of the temporal areas have been opened, the front hairline has also regressed to some extent. Hair loss has slowed down at a certain rate in an individual experiencing type 4 level, but permanent hair loss has begun to manifest itself. At this stage, hair transplantation can be seen as the most appropriate treatment.
In this stage, also known as baldness, the openings that occur on the sides have progressed well to the inner side and have begun to merge with the openings located in the crown area. A few tufts of hair can still be found on the front side. In this type of baldness, which usually occurs in middle age and after, hairs are observed instead of residual hair. Hair in the nape region can be weakened with age.
Type6 (Advanced Baldness)
Only hair found in the nape region remains. Balding at this stage will first begin to narrow, while the area between the two ears is covered with hair.
The person now faces advanced hair loss and baldness. It is also known as the most severe stage of hair loss. The Norwood scale analyzes people with this stage and reveals an appropriate treatment plan.
Norwood Scale for Hair Loss
In addition to determining the level of hair loss, this scale shows what treatment will be applied against this loss that you experience. If hair loss is at a noticeable and palpable level, it can be quite difficult to regain this hair. In such cases, when medications are insufficient, hair specialists or doctors may recommend prosthetic hair or hair transplantation. First, it should be known that the age range of hair loss in men is quite variable. Hair loss can occur in the early 20s and in the early 50s.
What Are The Benefits Of The Norwood Scale?
This scale primarily facilitates communication between you and your doctor. Since the scale divides hair loss into 7 separate categories, you can know at what stage of the hair loss process and want to apply treatment accordingly. Besides, not every human structure will be the same, and male pattern baldness differs from person to person. For this reason, The Norwood Scale provides great convenience to both the person and the doctor to determine and implement the correct treatment.