It was Hippocrates, the “Father of Modern Medicine”, who first recognized a connection between hair loss and the sexual organs. Hippocrates’ studies of eunuchs (men castrated before puberty) observed that these men did not suffer from hair loss.
We know today that this is due to the absence of testosterone, which is normally converted into dyhydrotestosterone or DHT – the active ingredient in baldness. In March 1995, Duke University researchers came to the conclusion that " . . . while castration may be a cure, it is not commercially acceptable."
Hippocrates had a personal interest in finding a cure for baldness as he suffered from hair loss. He developed a number of different treatments including a mixture of horseradish, cumin, pigeon droppings, and nettles to the scalp. This and other treatments failed to work and he lost the rest of his hair. The area of permanent hair on the back and sides of the head (from which donor hair is taken for hair transplants) is also known as the “Hippocratic wreath.”
Ancient Rome and Hair Loss
Moving from Greece to the Roman Empire, we find that Julius Caesar employed a variety of methods to hide his thinning hair. In addition to the laurel wreath that he wore, he first grew his hair long in the back, and then combed it forward over his bald spot. Yes, the “Comb Over” is ancient.
Learn how man has treated hair loss up to modern times.
Being a Eunuch – the sure way to stop baldness
In the 1940’s, the studies of Hippocrates and Aristotle were continued. Both men had concluded that eunuchs always kept all their hair.
This finding was backed up by the work of Dr. James Hamilton.
He discovered that certain male hormones (missing in eunuchs) were critical to the development of male pattern baldness.