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Quick guide to Rogaine

Brand Name(s): Rogaine

Generic Name Minoxidil Topical

What is minoxidil topical solution?

MINOXIDIL (Rogaine® Regular Strength For Men, Rogaine® for Women, Rogaine® Extra Strength For Men, Theroxidil® Extra Strength) stimulates new hair growth in cases of hereditary hair loss. When applied to the scalp, minoxidil can promote hair growth in men with male pattern baldness. Minoxidil (Rogaine® for Women) can also help women with thin hair and frontal hair loss. Women should not use extra-strength minoxidil products. Generic minoxidil topical solutions are available.

What should my health care professional know before I use minoxidil?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:

  • angina
  • damaged or sunburned skin
  • heart or blood vessel disease
  • kidney disease
  • lung disease
  • pheochromocytoma
  • previous heart attack
  • an unusual or allergic reaction to minoxidil, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • breast-feeding

How should I use this medicine?

Minoxidil solution is for external use on the scalp only. Do not take by mouth. Follow the directions that come with the product. The hair and scalp should be dry before you use minoxidil solution. You do not need to shampoo your hair before each application. Do not use within 30 minutes of bedtime. After applying minoxidil solution, do not use your hair dryer on the hot or high setting to dry hair. Also, do not swim or exercise for 2 hours after using minoxidil solution. Do not use more often than specified in the directions.

Minoxidil solution must be used on a regular basis for your hair to regrow. It may take 2—4 months of regular use before you notice any improvement. It is important to continue to use minoxidil solution to maintain regrowth of hair. Once you stop using minoxidil solution, the regrown hair will usually fall out within 3 months.

Contact your pediatrician or health care professional regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.

What if I miss a dose?

If you miss one or two daily applications, do not try to make up for missed applications. Return to your normal dosing schedule. Do not use more solution than the amount listed in the directions. Do not use more often than directed.

What drug(s) may interact with minoxidil?

Minoxidil solution is applied to the scalp. Therefore, it is unlikely to affect other medicines that you take by mouth. However, it is important to tell your prescriber or health care professional if you are taking medicine to treat high blood pressure, because there may be a chance of an increase in the effect of your blood pressure medicine.

Tell your prescriber or health care professional about all other medicines you are taking, including non-prescription medicines. Also tell your prescriber or health care professional if you are using any other hair products.

What side effects may I notice from using minoxidil?

Side effects that you should report to your prescriber or health care professional as soon as possible:

  • chest pain, fast or irregular heartbeat, palpitations
  • difficulty breathing
  • dizziness or fainting spells
  • skin rash, blisters, or itching
  • stiff or swollen joints
  • sudden weight gain
  • swelling of the feet or legs
  • unusual weakness

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your prescriber or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):

  • headache
  • redness, irritation and itching at the site of application
  • unusual hair growth, on the face, arm, and back

What should I watch for while taking minoxidil?

Continue to use minoxidil exactly as directed. It may take 2—4 months of treatment before you notice improvement. Minoxidil is not a cure for baldness. If it is effective, you will need to continue to apply the solution.

Do not get minoxidil in your eyes, nose, mouth, or on other sensitive areas. If you do, rinse off the solution with plenty of cool tap water. Always wash your hands after applying the solution. Do not apply if your scalp is cut, scraped, or sunburned.

Where can I keep my medicine?

Keep out of the reach of children in a container that small children cannot open.

Store at room temperature between 15 and 30 °C (59 and 86 °F). This product is flammable. Keep away from heat, fire or flame. Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.


(Note: The above information is not intended to replace the advice of your physician, pharmacist, or other healthcare professional. It is not meant to indicate that the use of the product is safe, appropriate, or effective for you.)

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