Losing all my hair with Asacol and Remicade

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Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 80
   Posted 8/19/2009 4:57 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Gang!
I have great news related to the Remicade & Asacol - so far no bowel issues since June... HOWEVER... I am losing my hair. I had super thick hair.... now my hair is about 1/3 of what it was. I am noticeably going bald. Has anyone else experienced these symptoms from either the asacol and/or remicade? The pharmacist said it is a side effect of both drugs so I was cut from 3,600 mg of Asacol to 2,400 and had another infusion yesterday. My doc has set me up with a dermatologist appt for Friday - which I don't know how much help that is going to be. My nutritionist said for me to take Zinc & Calcium together to help. Has anyone run into this? Did anything work for you? I was ok at first but the fact that my hair is falling out at a rate of about 5 to 10 strands every time I run my hand through it makes me nervous, I can only do that for so long before I have no hair left. Any advice is greatly appreciated,
29 yr old recently diagnosed with UC in Nov 08. Taking Asacol 3 times daily and Steriod enemas 2 times daily. no children, very active;
Started Remicade 6/25/09

Forum Moderator

Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 16731
   Posted 8/19/2009 5:27 PM (GMT -6)   
I lost a ton from Asacol but eventually I stopped losing it and it's fine now - growing back even. I probably have 3/4 of what I originally had. I have heard biotin can help.
Diagnosed with mild proctitis in March 2007: Treated with Canasa (as needed)
December 08: Began treating with Asacol 400mg (9/day) + Canasa 2x/day - Anemic
May 09: Off Canasa, taking Asacol (9/day)
Back on Canasa every other night + Asacol (9/day) + Probiotics + Iron
Reducing to 6 Asacol/day + Canasa + Probiotics + Iron - So far so good!!! -SPOKE TOO SOON! Back to 9/day...

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 269
   Posted 8/19/2009 7:47 PM (GMT -6)   
I took a vitamin with extra B-12 in it. They also make a shampoo to help hair grow faster and thicker called Nioxin. I didn't use it when I had hair loss with asacol, azathioprine and pred but my mom used it during her chemo after she lost her hair. Good luck it gets better! When my hair starting coming in again it was curlier than before.

25yrs old/ teacher/ Wisconsin

Diagnosed UC Pancolitis in Nov 2004
Diagnosed PSC in Oct 2006
Proctocolectomy and J-pouch formed with loop ileostomy April 2009
Reversal June 2009

Scrap Girl
Veteran Member

Date Joined Jan 2007
Total Posts : 653
   Posted 8/19/2009 8:49 PM (GMT -6)   
I developed major hair loss with Asacol after I had been taking it for about a year. My GI switched me to Colazal and it stopped. My hair also came back curlier/frizzier. Try Biotin 5000 - you can buy it cheap at most drug stores.

Diagnosed with UC in Feb. 2005
Colazal (9 a day)
Folic Acid

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 1766
   Posted 8/19/2009 9:57 PM (GMT -6)   
I never lost hair on Asacol, but I have started losing hair since going on Colazal and Remicade. I used to have really thick hair and I've lost half of it. My GI and derm have been no help at all. I started 1000 mcg biotin and Therapro Mediceuticals hair loss line (it's like Nioxin, except more natural ingredients), but I haven't noticed much of a difference. Maybe I need to increase the biotin.
Female, Age 20
Remicade, Colazal, VSL #3 DS, Vitamin D Rx, Calcium, Prozac, Turmeric, Biotin

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 80
   Posted 8/21/2009 4:16 PM (GMT -6)   
Ok, here's what I heard from my Derma... She was concerned at the amount of hair that I had lost (it is an old HS friend and she knew what my hair used to look like)... She told me to use Rogaine for Men (even though I'm a female) because it is 2 1/2 times stronger than the female solution - once a day. On top of that I have been prescribed a topical steroid to put on my scalp once a day. The topical solution is called Olux-E. It is very expensive but if you have insurance, it is reasonable. The solution is $279.99 without insurance but my insurance treated it as a generic for $20. We are going to re-evaluate in 2 months. She swears that the topical steroids do not have the same effects as the ones we use as enemas and pills... so I'm good with that. I am going to take the b-12 on top of that and the biotin. We'll see. Thanks for the posts!! i wouldn't know what to do without ya'll to ask questions!! smhair
29 yr old recently diagnosed with UC in Nov 08. Taking Asacol 3 times daily and Steriod enemas 2 times daily. no children, very active;
Started Remicade 6/25/09

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 80
   Posted 8/21/2009 4:17 PM (GMT -6)   
Oh, and for those of you who have to purchase the Rogaine, Kroger food stores have a generic that costs 1/3 of what the Rogaine namebrand costs.
29 yr old recently diagnosed with UC in Nov 08. Taking Asacol 3 times daily and Steriod enemas 2 times daily. no children, very active;
Started Remicade 6/25/09

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 5975
   Posted 8/21/2009 4:52 PM (GMT -6)   
     I started losing my hair on the 6MP.  Nioxin works very well.
62 yr old granny. South Jersey
Diagnosed with ulcerative proctitis in 1998 in hospital
Hospitalized (2nd time) in May 2008
Meds as of June 09: Colazal (6 per day), 6MP (50 mgm), Probiotic (upped to 3 per day), Fish oil capsule, calcium, multivitamin, Cort enema nightly, Canasa in morning.  Also taking Benicar and Toprol to control high blood pressure.  Getting old is a b****.

Jen O
Regular Member

Date Joined May 2009
Total Posts : 136
   Posted 8/21/2009 7:08 PM (GMT -6)   
I lost 3/4 of my hair! GI, PCP, Endocrinologist did all kinds of tests. They blamed it on the "stress from UC" and Pred. I was on Remi and Asacol at the same time, too. Was probably a combination of the 4 things, I guess.

My hairdresser told me to take Biotin 5 mgs. I have been doing that for about 6 months and my hair is growing back much thicker and curly like others have said! It didn't fall out this 2nd time I was on Pred, either.

Good Luck.

Age 34, Diagnosed with UC September 2008
Current Meds:
Started Azathioprine 100 mgs 6/22/2009 and Apriso 4 tabs daily 6/11/2009
Biotin 5 mg
Vitamin D 2,000 IU per day
Calcium 1500 mg per day
Flaxseed Oil 3000 mg per day
Rite Aid Probiotic
Also tried: Remicade, Asacol, Rowasa, Cantasa, Prednisone 2 times for about 3 months each

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 65
   Posted 8/22/2009 11:12 PM (GMT -6)   
I have read many posts about people losing their hair from UC medications. Does anyone think that maybe the hairloss is somehow related to the UC and not the medications? My hair started thinning at age 16 and has continued despite the fact that I am on no UC medications. It could just be male pattern baldness, although it doesn't really run in my family. Like I said, I'm just throwing it out there and could be way off base, but maybe for some people thinning hair is just another symptom of UC.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 903
   Posted 8/23/2009 10:36 AM (GMT -6)   
I lost half of my hair when I was on Remicade, when I stopped it, it took me 2 1/2 years to finally get it all back to normal and full length, I was able to layer it over a year ago though. The meds I'm on now isn't giving me any problems.
27 year old, Married, Female.
Diagnosed with UC since March 2007

Taking Humira since of May 2007 (Currently in remission since May 2007with minor yearly flares)
Put on Imuran from May 2007 to Jan, 15 2009
Put on Canasa June 25, 2009, off Canasa on June 30th 2009.
*Can't take Asacol, Allergic to Remicade, odd reactions to Canasa went backwards a bit.
*Started minor flare in mid June 2009 but VERY minor. :(

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