Review: Spironolactone may be effective for hirsutism but data are lacking on its effectiveness for acne vulgaris in women: COMMENTARY

Sinclair, Rodney
May 2004
ACP Journal Club;May/Jun2004, Vol. 140 Issue 3, p74
Academic Journal
Perception of hirsutism is by definition subjective, and women present with a wide variation in severity. Endocrine investigation differs according to clinical severity, associated features, and the background of the clinician. The extent to which women with hirsutism who have no evidence of virilization require investigation is debatable. Just as hirsutism is difficult to define, it is difficult to monitor. Clinical response requires hairs to complete growth cycle and takes 6 months. In western countries, pharmacologic therapy now may be less important than physical therapies, such as laser hair removal. The study concluded that 6 months of therapy with 100 mg daily of spironolactone, an oral antiandrogen, improves hirsutism more than placebo. It concludes that no difference exists between 100 and 200 mg daily of spironolactone, but some women clearly show a dose response.


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