The Norwood Hair Scale By Bernard Arocha, MD on August 02, 2022

You are not the first person experiencing male pattern hair loss, and you certainly won’t be the last. Thankfully, it is much more treatable than in the past. Male pattern baldness is typically caused by genetics. When DHT accumulates in the hair follicles over time, it causes the growth stage of the hair follicle to shorten. There are medicines that contain DHT blockers that can have a huge impact on the treatment of male pattern baldness. Male pattern baldness can also be caused by environmental factors or other medical conditions, which are often equally treatable.

Doctors use different metrics to understand the extent and pattern of hair loss in their patients in order to make a proper diagnosis. The Norwood Hair Scale (or Hamilton Norwood Scale) shows the different stages of hair loss in easy-to-understand detail. This is the most common hair scale used to diagnose hair loss. It not only gives doctors a guide to making a diagnosis, but it also allows patients to see what stage they are at and the treatment options available to them at that stage of the Norwood Scale.

If you are seeing signs of hair loss, it is a good idea to check out the Norwood Scale and study how far you are along. The sooner you act, the more options you have for treatment and the better likelihood you have of receiving the best possible outcome for your hair long-term. Stopping hair loss, fighting the receding hairline, hair thickening, and even restarting hair growth are all possible through modern medicine.

the norwood hair scale

Norwood Hair Scale

  • Stage 1. There is not yet any sign of recession of the hairline or significant hair loss.
  • Stage 2. The hairline around the temples appears to be receding slightly. Hairlines that appear like this are also known as mature or adult hairlines.
  • Stage 3. The initial signs of clinically significant balding have appeared. At both of the temples, the hairline becomes deeply recessed, resembling a V, M, or U shape. Hair is sparsely or completely absent in the recessed areas. Stage 3 Vertex. Another form of stage 3. On the vertex (top of the scalp), hair loss is significant, but the hairline remains at stage 2.
  • Stage 4. This stage shows an even more severe recession of the hairline, as well as sparse or no hair on the vertex as compared with stage 2. In between the two areas of hair loss, there is a band of hair that connects to the remaining hair on the sides of the head.
  • Stage 5. In stage 5, there are two larger areas where hair loss is occurring. Significant hair loss on the vertex, although they are still separated, the hair between them is sparser and narrower.
  • Stage 6. A balding area at the vertex joins the balding area at the temples. It appears that the hair band across the top of the head has disappeared or is sparse.
  • Stage 7. The hair loss is at its most severe level; only a band remains along the sides of the head. Most of the time, this hair is not dense and may be fine in texture.



There are various options available for all the stages of the Norwood Scale. Whether you are at stage 2 or stage 7, don’t panic. Dr. Arocha created the Arocha Hair Restoration & Hair Transplant Center to get results. Arocha has various therapeutic options available, such as hair loss medications, scalp micropigmentation, or transplantation.

What Are All the Treatment Options Available?


A popular prescription drug for treating baldness, Finasteride is sold under the brand name Propecia. As a result of the medication, DHT is decreased, a hormone that affects hair follicles and causes hair loss. Researchers have found that 80% of men who take finasteride will see an improvement in their hair loss. Although finasteride can have sexual side effects such as decreased sex drive and erectile dysfunction.


A foam or liquid on the scalp, Minoxidil is available over-the-counter under the brand name Rogaine. By promoting blood flow to the hair, it stimulates hair growth. Minoxidil is best suited for men under the age of 40 who have had hair loss for less than five years. Treatment may not work if hair loss has been ongoing for a long time or has spread to a larger part of the scalp.

Low-Level Laser Therapy Device

The FDA approves LLLT as an effective treatment for hair loss. Depending on the user's preference, they are available as a wand or as a wearable cap, emitting a continuous red light. According to researchers, LLLT can trigger stem cells in the roots of the hair to stimulate hair growing back.

Hair Loss and Restoration Services

There is not a one-cure-all for transplants. There are a variety of transplants and procedures available to trained physicians that can help anyone make the best choice for themselves. Follicular Unit Extraction and Transplantation, The ARTAS Procedure, Corrective (Revision) Hair Transplant, and others are all procedures to consider.

Other Options

Medication, lasers, and surgical procedures are not the only cures for hair loss. Many things can be done right at home to slow or stop hair loss. Thickening hair shampoo, getting the proper vitamins and minerals, and reducing stress have all been shown to fight hair loss as well.

Take Action

Wherever you are on the Norwood Scale, you have a chance to fight it. Call us at Arocha Hair Restoration to learn about therapeutic options from our hair loss specialists. They will be able to make a medical diagnosis and then assign a proper treatment for your thinning hair, balding areas, receding hairline, or any other hair issues you are having.


The longer you wait, the more difficult and time-consuming hair loss treatment can be. The best day to start fighting and beating your hair troubles is today. Go to to send us your info or give us a call at 713-526-HAIR so that we can set up an appointment. We have locations in Houston, Dallas, Austin, and San Antonio and can also give consultations virtually via FaceTime, WhatsApp, or Zoom if you are not able to come in.

"Watching my patients’ self-esteem soar and listening to my patients express their gratitude for changing their lives has had a profound impact on my practice."


-Dr. Arocha

Don't wait! The amount of hair remaining on your head does not need to be permanent! Call Arocha Hair Restoration today at 713-526-4247 to schedule your virtual consultation.


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Arocha Hair Restoration

Since 2002, Bernardino A. Arocha, M.D. has been transforming lives through the power of hair restoration. With an artistic approach and a variety of procedures available, Arocha Hair Restoration has a track record of providing stunning results. Dr. Arocha is affiliated with prominent organizations with memberships that include:

  • Diplomate, American Board of Hair Restoration Surgery (ABHRS)
  • Fellow, International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery (ISHRS)
  • American Society of Hair Restoration Surgery (ASHRS)
  • American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery (AACS)

If you're ready for a full head of hair, we invite you to contact us with our form or call us at (713) 526-4247.

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