Does Mounjaro Cause Hair Loss?

Why has my hair started thinning out since starting Mounjaro? Learn about hair loss associated with weight loss and what to do about it.

Table of Contents
  • Does Mounjaro Cause Hair Loss?
  • Why Does Mounjaro Cause Hair Loss?
  • Common Questions About Mounjaro and Hair Loss
  • Get Personalized Guidance on Your Weight Loss Journey

Mounjaro was approved by the FDA in 2022 for the treatment of type 2 diabetes, though it’s commonly used off-label for weight loss. Mounjaro’s active ingredient is tirzepatide, which is also used in Zepbound, the FDA-approved label for treating patients who are obese or overweight with weight-related conditions.

You likely know Mounjaro as the weight loss medication that’s helped thousands of people achieve drastic weight loss results (1). If you’re considering or have started using Mounjaro, you may be concerned about the reports of hair loss on the medication. Is there really a link, or is it merely a coincidence? This article covers everything you need to know about Mounjaro and its correlation to hair loss.

Does Mounjaro Cause Hair Loss?

Mounjaro itself does not cause hair loss. However, drastic weight loss, no matter how it’s achieved, can trigger temporary hair loss

Hair loss is not mentioned as an adverse effect for Mounjaro on its package insert. Nonetheless, a study conducted in 2022 reported that hair loss (alopecia) was observed in approximately 4-5% of participants on tirzepatide (2), in contrast to far fewer participants who reported this side effect while on placebo.

Why Does Mounjaro Cause Hair Loss? 

Weight loss has many benefits, even as little as a 5% loss of body fat. This includes reducing the likelihood of developing type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease (3). While there are many pros to being on Mounjaro, there are also potential side effects that come with taking the medication. Common side effects are gastrointestinal and include diarrhea, constipation, nausea, vomiting, and decreased appetite (4). 

As stated, Mounjaro itself is not thought to cause hair loss. However, drastic weight loss in a short amount of time by any method can potentially cause hair loss (5,6). More research is needed to clarify, but the hair loss you’ve been hearing about is likely due to metabolic stress caused by the rapid weight loss effect. 

Telogen effluvium is a medical term for hair shedding in the resting, or  “telogen,” phase of your hair's normal growth cycle. Stress can trigger telogen effluvium, resulting in many hair follicles entering the resting and shedding phase (7). Telogen effluvium is by no means specific to stress from extreme weight loss. It can be triggered by several common stressors, such as long-term illness, major trauma, childbirth, hormonal imbalances, nutritional deficiency, certain medications, and emotional stress (7). 

Common Questions About Mounjaro and Hair Loss

Is Hair Loss From Mounjaro Permanent?

While you may notice your hair thinning, it generally thins evenly rather than leaving behind bald spots. The good news is that this type of hair loss is generally a temporary side effect of rapid weight loss. Once the weight stabilizes and your body has adjusted to its new normal, this side effect triggered by metabolic stress will likely subside, and your hair will regrow (7).

Is Hair Loss From Mounjaro Preventable?

While there’s no way to know who will experience hair thinning while on Mounjaro, there are some steps you can take to prevent this from happening:

  1. Consultation: Discuss any concerns about hair loss with your healthcare provider. They will provide personalized advice and potentially adjust your medication regimen if necessary to slow down the rate of weight loss and minimize unwanted side effects such as hair loss.
  2. Nutrition: Ensuring a balanced diet rich in vitamins and minerals essential for hair health, such as iron, zinc, and biotin, may help minimize hair loss (8).
  3. Hair Care: Gentle hair care practices, such as using mild shampoos, avoiding excessive heat styling, and minimizing hair pulling or tight hairstyles, can help prevent further hair loss.

Do other GLP-1 Medications Cause Hair Loss?

Other weight loss medications in the glucagon-like peptide-1 agonist (GLP-1) class have been shown to be associated with hair loss. This includes Zepbound, which uses tirzepatide, and Ozempic and Wegovy, which use semaglutide.  

Get Personalized Guidance on Your Weight Loss Journey

Get access to a weight loss plan tailored just for you with Mochi Health. From GLP-1 medications to ongoing support from obesity medicine specialists, we offer everything you need for a healthier tomorrow. Membership includes virtual visits with a Mochi provider, unlimited appointments with a registered dietitian, an online support group, access to sleep apnea testing, cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia, genetic testing, and labs and scans. Your insurance coverage affects the pricing of brand-name medications, but Mochi Health offers compounded alternatives for your convenience and budget. Get compounded semaglutide for $175/month and tirzepatide for $325/month, delivered straight to your door, ensuring you access effective treatments at an affordable price. Find out if you're eligible to join our program today. 

Sources

  1. Jastreboff AM, Aronne LJ, Ahmad NN, Wharton S, Connery L, Alves B, Kiyosue A, Zhang S, Liu B, Bunck MC, Stefanski A; SURMOUNT-1 Investigators. Tirzepatide Once Weekly for the Treatment of Obesity. N Engl J Med. 2022 Jul 21;387(3):205-216. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa2206038. Epub 2022 Jun 4. PMID: 35658024.
  2. Moll, Hannah, et al. “A Living Benefit-Harm Modelling Study of GLP-1 Receptor Agonists for Weight Reduction in Non-Diabetic Obese and Overweight Individuals.” SSRN, 1 Feb. 2024, papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=4709105. Accessed 19 Apr. 2024. 
  3. Knowler, W. C., Barrett-Connor, E., Fowler, S. E., Hamman, R. F., Lachin, J. M., Walker, E. A., Nathan, D. M., & Diabetes Prevention Program Research Group (2002). Reduction in the incidence of type 2 diabetes with lifestyle intervention or metformin. The New England journal of medicine, 346(6), 393–403. https://doi-org.offcampus.lib.washington.edu/10.1056/NEJMoa012512
  4. “Type 2 Diabetes Treatment to Lower A1C: Mounjaro® (Tirzepatide).” Type 2 Diabetes Treatment to Lower A1C | Mounjaro® (Tirzepatide), mounjaro.lilly.com/. Accessed 19 Apr. 2024. 
  5. Cohen-Kurzrock RA, Cohen PR. Bariatric Surgery-Induced Telogen Effluvium (Bar SITE): Case Report and a Review of Hair Loss Following Weight Loss Surgery. Cureus. 2021 Apr 21;13(4):e14617. doi: 10.7759/cureus.14617. PMID: 34055500; PMCID: PMC8144077.
  6. Hughes EC, Saleh D. Telogen Effluvium. [Updated 2023 May 29]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2024 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK430848/#
  7. Asghar F, Shamim N, Farooque U, Sheikh H, Aqeel R. Telogen Effluvium: A Review of the Literature. Cureus. 2020 May 27;12(5):e8320. doi: 10.7759/cureus.8320. PMID: 32607303; PMCID: PMC7320655.
  8. Almohanna, H. M., Ahmed, A. A., Tsatalis, J. P., & Tosti, A. (2019). The Role of Vitamins and Minerals in Hair Loss: A Review. Dermatology and therapy, 9(1), 51–70. https://doi.org/10.1007/s13555-018-0278-6

Ready to transform your health?

Unlock access to expert guidance and a weight care plan crafted just for you.