Depakote and Hair Loss

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Georgie Girl
Regular Member

Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 319
   Posted 6/20/2008 11:06 AM (GMT -6)   
I have been on Depakote since March 23rd.  Someone on this forum or another wrote "If you care about your looks, avoid Depakote and Zyprexa".  Well I take both.  In addition to weight gain from constant hunger, I have lost alot of hair on the top/front of my head.  Back of head seems not to be affected or else it had more hair to begin with so loss isn't noticeable.  I am to the point where I may need a wig.  I am calling my pdoc on Monday to discuss going off the Depakote (I will still be on Lamictal, Lexapro and Zyprexa).  For those of you who have taken Depakote, had hair loss, and then stopped the Depakote, did your hair come back or is the hair loss permanent?  Isn't it awful that we have to deal with the side effects of the very drugs that are saving our lives or at least our sanity?
Georgie Girl

Ellie 1
Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 1291
   Posted 6/20/2008 12:27 PM (GMT -6)   
I'm not on Depakote but I wonder if other psych drugs have this effect also.  I have hip length hair that has always been very very thick.  Not so anymore.  It has thinned noticably in the last 2 years.  Not to the point of a wig, not yet.  But if this continues that could be in my future.

Good judgement comes from experience and alot of that comes from bad judgement.
You just have to accept that some days you're the pigeon, and some days you're the statue. 

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 1432
   Posted 6/20/2008 6:51 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey There Georgie Girl,
You poor thing! Are you sure it is from the depakote? Interesting. I was on depakote and didn't notice any hair loss but I did notice the weight gain. I asked my pdoc to try something else in place of it. It took me a long time to find something that worked that well for me that I almost had considered going back on it! But luckily for me the last med that I was willing to try worked out for me.
I hope things work out for you!
 Bipolar - August 2004
     Crohns disease - 1995 
Arthritis & Fibromyalgia 
Leo Buscaglia

Regular Member

Date Joined May 2008
Total Posts : 163
   Posted 6/21/2008 6:20 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey. I was on Depakote and had long thick hair before I started it. I lost so much of it I had to cut it really short and hated it. The Depakote didn't work for me so when I went off of it my hair came back just as thick as before and curly! It has taken me three years to get it back down to the long length it was before. The extra curl is nice too.

That is my experience with it. Hope it helps.

"I'm not crazy; I'm just a little unwell."  Matchbox Twenty

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 672
   Posted 6/22/2008 10:37 AM (GMT -6)   
 I have taken zyprexa since Oct 2006,,,,,, and I have lost a lot of hair......

Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 85
   Posted 6/22/2008 11:39 PM (GMT -6)   

happened to me too...

You can try some supplements after talking to your doc (selenium, zinc, and biotin).  The biotin has been successful in some studies.  I also used Nioxin shampoo/conditioner/treatment for hair loss.  Expensive, but comes in a huge bottle.  You can usually go to JCPenny and find buy 1 get one 50% off type deal.  You don't need to use a lot so it lasts a long time.  I was impatient and went off the depakote (it also stopped working right).  Takes quite a while (now on a month) but the hair loss stops over time.  I also had long thick hair, very depressing.  But that's the card we're dealt, nothing you can do but try some of these remedies.  Sucks having to take more pills, yuck.

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