Hirsutism


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hirsutism

[′hər·sə‚tiz·əm]
(medicine)
An abnormal condition characterized by growth of hair in unusual places and in unusual amounts.

Hirsutism

 

masculine type of hairiness in women; one of the manifestations of virilism. The term “hirsutism” was introduced into medical practice in 1910 by the French physician E. Apert.

Hirsutism is most often a symptom of several diseases produced by affection of the adrenal cortex and the sex glands. A symptom resembling hirsutism is also observed with the development of a tumor in the anterior pituitary gland, which is accompanied by increased secretion of the hormone that activates function of the adrenal cortex. Hirsutism is revealed by the appearance of hair on the face (mustache and beard), abdomen, chest, arms, and legs. It may be characterized by the predominance of adiposity (“adipose” hirsutism) with excessive development of blackheads or by sharply expressed masculine traits. In the latter case, the musculature and skeleton of young women resemble those of a man (“muscular” hirsutism), and meat-red spots appear on the body (mainly on the face and legs). Hirsutism in little girls is often accompanied by premature development of the external sex organs and of secondary sexual characteristics of the male, underdeveloped internal sex organs, absence of menstruation, enlargement of the mammary glands (owing to fatty, not glandular, tissue), and roughening of the voice; there is psychological and intellectual retardation, and sexual feeling is absent. Treatment of hirsutism calls for surgery and X-ray therapy.

Hairiness is sometimes observed also in women during the climacteric, when there is a decrease in ovarian function. In the absence of the other clinical symptoms observed in pathologic hirsutism, family (genetic) hirsutism, which develops in young women, often in the period of sexual maturation, presents a special picture. This type is apparently the result of an increased sensitivity of the hair bulbs to the normal male-hormone content in the woman’s body. The treatment for this form of hirsutism consists in local attack on the hair bulbs—electrocoagulation and electrolysis.

L. M. GOL’BER

References in periodicals archive ?
However, metformin has been a very important addition to PCOS management, and two systemic reviews have shown that metformin reduces menstrual irregularity and improves ovulation rates, although it has poor impact on hirsutism.
Finally, at the end of the sixth month of treatment, physical examination focusing on anthropometric indices and all preliminary laboratory tests were done again and hirsutism was reevaluated.
In mentioned study, it was determined that clinical characteristics such as hyperandrogenism and acne were associated with poorer body satisfaction, whereas hirsutism and BMI unfavorably affect all measured psychosocial variables.
Treatments for hirsutism range from the Pill - Dianette is a favourite - to anti-androgens such as cyproterone acetate, which block the effect of androgen on hair follicles.
Hirsutism occurs in 70% of women with PCOS in the USA, as opposed to only 10-20% of Japanese women diagnosed with PCOS (Visnova 2003).
She developed facial and truncal obesity, facial hirsutism and a buffalo hump after 2 years on treatment with inhaled steroids.
Serum prostate-specific antigen concentrations are not useful for monitoring the treatment of hirsutism with oral contraceptive pills.
If a patient with mild hirsutism develops associated symptoms, she can be tested then, he said.
KEY WORDS: adrenocortical carcinoma, Cushing's syndrome, hirsutism, pheochromocytoma, synaptophysin, virilization
Nonclassical, or late-onset, CAH may share many of the features of PCOS such as acne, hirsutism, and menstrual irregularity, and additional work could include the measurement of 17-hydroxyprogesterone in such patients to further investigate this hypothesis.
EL SEGUNDO, CA -- In what doctors call a medical first, Chris Haslam is actively seeking to be afflicted with the rare skin condition known as hirsutism, where one's entire face is covered in hair.
Hirsutism (excess body and/or facial hair in a male-like pattern, particularly on the chin, upper lip, breasts, inner thighs, and abdomen)