How to get oral minoxidil for hair loss?
Get a consultation with an online dermatologist to request oral minoxidil for hair growth and start reaping its hair growth benefits.
Table of Content:
Do you need a prescription to get minoxidil? | How to get a minoxidil prescription? | What is oral minoxidil used for? | How does it work? | Benefits & side effects | Warning and precautions | Minoxidil brand names | How to use minoxidil | FAQ about how to get an oral minoxidil prescription
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The information presented in this article is based on scientific research and the professional advice of our Content Medical Reviewers, who are experts in the field of Dermatology. How we write our content →
In this article, we will explain how you can get oral minoxidil for hair loss, the recommended dose, if it requires a doctor’s prescription, and the necessary steps you should take to get it as treatment for hair growth.
Understanding the benefits, side effects, and mechanism of action of this and other medications for the treatment of male androgenic alopecia (such as finasteride and dutasteride) can help you and your online dermatologist make a more informed decision about your treatment options.
Do you need a prescription to get oral minoxidil?
Yes. Oral minoxidil is a prescription medication which means you need to have a consultation with a healthcare professional and it cannot be purchased over-the-counter (OTC). Oral minoxidil is taken orally (by mouth) in a low dose for the treatment of hair loss.
How can you get a prescription for oral minoxidil and what is the price of the online consultation?
You can have a virtual, photo-based dermatology consultation with a healthcare provider via the Miiskin app, and if they deem it adequate, you can pick up your minoxidil tablets at the pharmacy of your choice.
Downloading the Miiskin app is free of charge, however, the price of the virtual consultation depends on each healthcare provider and it doesn’t include the medications.
What is oral minoxidil used for?
Originally, oral minoxidil was approved by the FDA for the treatment of high blood pressure. However, when studies revealed that it caused hypertrichosis (excessive hair growth) in 60 to 80% of patients taking the medication, the pharmaceutical manufacturer began clinical trials for hair loss1.
The use of oral minoxidil for hair loss is becoming extremely popular among patients and providers since it is possible to obtain the desired hair growth results with a low dose while keeping adverse side effects at bay.
A low dose of oral minoxidil is used as an off-label treatment for different types of hair loss in men and women such as androgenetic alopecia, alopecia areata, female pattern hair loss, chronic telogen effluvium, monilethrix, and chemotherapy-induced alopecia2.
Request a prescription for oral minoxidil for hair loss treatment.
Get rid of hair loss and request a personal treatment plan from one of our affiliated dermatology providers. Let them know if you have a specific medicine in mind.
How does oral minoxidil work?
Hair follicle growth is a cyclic process that goes through three phases: growth (anagen), transition (catagen), and rest (telogen). During each cycle, there are periods of rapid hair growth followed by periods of no growth, which are caused by signals that lead to cell death3.
Minoxidil works by decreasing the rest phase, or telogen phase, of the hair growth cycle, while also prolonging the growth phase, or anagen phase. As a result, hair stays in a growing phase for a longer period, leading to increased length, thickness, and scalp coverage4.
Moreover, Minoxidil has the additional effect of expanding blood vessels in the scalp, enhancing blood supply to hair follicles. This could also boost the availability of essential nutrients, promoting hair regrowth5.
Studies have shown promising results exploring the use of low-dose oral minoxidil for the treatment of alopecia6 7 8 .
Medications that can be combined with oral minoxidil
- Topical minoxidil: and oral minoxidil can be used together to increase efficacy.
- Oral finasteride: has a very different mechanism of action as it blocks the effect of androgens on hair follicles in androgenic alopecia, therefore they can be used in combination.
- Oral dutasteride: works quite similarly to finasteride but it is more effective, therefore it can be combined with oral minoxidil
Medications that cannot be combined with oral minoxidil
- Nitroglycerin: Minoxidil can increase the vasodilatory effects of nitroglycerin, which can lead to a significant drop in blood pressure.
- Calcium channel blockers: these medications are used to reduce blood pressure and since minoxidil lowers blood pressure it is not advisable to combine these drugs.
- ACE inhibitors: these medications are used to treat high blood pressure and heart failure, therefore it is not advisable to use them in combination with oral minoxidil.
Warning and precautions when using oral minoxidil
Oral minoxidil cannot be used by people with heart disease and may be prescribed with a diuretic to reduce water retention or a beta blocker (a medication that reduces the workload of the heart) to prevent reflex tachycardia. There is also a risk of developing pericardial effusion that may progress to cardiac tamponade and angina pectoris exacerbation with oral minoxidil11.
During the course of this medication, it is advisable to keep track of your pulse rate and blood pressure. Seek advice from your online dermatologist if you notice any changes. Additionally, it is suggested that you regularly weigh yourself while taking the medication and notify your healthcare provider if you gain more than 5 pounds or notice any swelling in your feet or legs12.
Do not take oral minoxidil with other medicines for appetite control, asthma, colds, cough, hay fever, or sinus problems, since they may tend to increase your blood pressure.
Brand names of oral minoxidil
- Minoxidil HTN
How to use minoxidil?
Minoxidil is available in 2.5mg, 5mg and 10mg tablets.
A common starting dose for hair loss may vary between (0.25-5 mg/day) per day. You can get a tablet cutter from your pharmacy and cut a 2.5mg tablet into quarters or halves to get to the desired dose; however, the optimal dose for hair loss is not entirely clear and you and your online dermatologist may be required to test different doses to find the one that suits your needs. For men, a slightly higher dose may sometimes be required.
FAQ about oral minoxidil
How and where to buy oral minoxidil online?
By signing up with a provider in the Miiskin app you can request a photo-based virtual consultation from an independent licensed healthcare professional. The process takes five minutes approximately and the request is usually reviewed in less than three business days. After your request has been reviewed, you will be able to pick up your prescription at the pharmacy of your choice.
How to get minoxidil pills for hair loss?
We can put in touch with an independent online dermatologist. If minoxidil is suitable for you the doctor can write you a prescription after a short photo-based virtual consultation.
What is the typical oral minoxidil dose for hair loss?
Oral minoxidil at a low dose of 0.25-5 mg/day typically gives good results for the treatment of alopecia, with minimal side effects.
Is oral minoxidil available over the counter?
No. Minoxidil is not available over the counter (OTC). You need a doctor’s prescription.
How much does it cost to get a prescription for oral minoxidil?
The costs for a photo-based consultation via the Miiskin app depends on the provider, and does not include the costs for any prescribed medication.
How long will it take to get a prescription for oral minoxidil?
A photo-based consultation usually takes less than three business days to be evaluated.
How/when will I get my minoxidil?
You can pick up your minoxidil at the pharmacy of your choice after your online dermatologist has reviewed your case and medically assessed that a minoxidil prescription is right for you.
Request a minoxidil or finasteride prescription for hair growth!
If you are struggling with hair loss and are interested in getting effective treatment start a photo-based consultation now. Our affiliated dermatologists will make a personalized treatment plan. Let them know if you have a specific medicine in mind.