At just 50 years young, Kat Carney discovered she was experiencing hair loss — and despite trying multiple expensive treatments, nothing seemed to help. Then a health challenge revealed the reason for her hair loss and the inexpensive cure!
Kat Carney was enjoying dinner in a restaurant when she noticed someone at a nearby table giving the back of her head a long, curious look. What is she looking at? Kat wondered, self-consciously.
Grabbing a mirror as soon as she got home, the Atlanta 50-year-old gasped in shock as her eyes zeroed in on a nearly bald spot. “I’m losing hair back there too!” she said.
Kat’s hair had been thinning on top for a while, and every day she’d found more hair in her brush. But that glimpse in the mirror drove home how bad the problem really had become and filled her with panic. “I have to do something!” she thought and immediately made an appointment with a dermatologist.
During the examination, Kat’s doctor noted that her hair was very dry and brittle. “It’s probably due to stress,” she said. “But I don’t feel stressed.”
The doctor then prescribed steroid injections in the scalp every six weeks, a liquid topical steroid, an antibiotic, and an oral steroid — which cost her nearly $500 a month.
To boot, Kat also started using a deep conditioner, doing hot oil hair treatments to soften its texture and even getting hair extensions until hers had improved. Another $250 every eight weeks, she sighed, adding the cost to the already high price of the medical treatments.
“Please let this work,” Kat prayed. But at her six-week follow up with the dermatologist, only tiny dots of hair were starting to show in the bald spots.
Then, one day, Kat began experiencing chest palpitations and went to the hospital. At the ER, doctors considered anemia as a cause, but the results were negative. Kat’s primary care doctor then ran blood tests that specifically checked her ferritin levels, and found Kat’s were at the lowest end of normal.
Ferritin, he explained, is a protein in the body that stores iron. “If low you can suffer heart palpitations, fatigue even hair loss,” he said.
“Maybe that’s why I’m losing my hair!” Kat thought.
A simple hair loss solution.
At her doctor’s suggestion, Kat looked into supplements and, after also consulting her dermatologist, started taking 325 mg. of ferrous sulfate (the equivalent of 65 mg. of elemental iron) once daily. Not only was Kat thrilled by the simple solution, she was overjoyed at the cost. One bottle like Nature’s Truth Iron & Ferrous Sulfate (Buy on Amazon, $8.14) is super inexpensive!
After four months, Kat’s ferritin level was rising and her hair was growing, so her doctor increased her dose to one pill, three times a day.
After sticking to that regimen for a year, Kat had a full, lush head of hair once more. In fact, she’s often complimented on how gorgeous it is.
“Hair loss and low-iron clipped away five years of my life,” the 51-year-old says. “I spent thousands on what was ultimately a vitamin-deficiency symptom. Now, I feel great and better than ever!”
Note from the editors: Women, especially over 50, often have elevated iron levels. Always have your doctor check your iron levels before starting supplements.
This article originally appeared in our print magazine.