Hair removal, also known as epilation or depilation, is the deliberate removal of body hair and it is carried out for both medical, as in the case of hirsutism, and non-medical reasons.
For the medical condition of hirsutism there is not a single drug on the market approved by the Foods and Drugs Administration (FDA) to treat it. The only product which is approved is Vaniqa®, a skin cream that can be used to slow the growth of unwanted facial hair in women. It does not remove hair permanently. Most treatments today consist of combination treatments and many include laser therapy or the contraceptive pill.
The more physical methods of treatment include:
- Chemical hair removal, waxing, and bleaching
- Laser hair removal
Although not directly comparable with Follicum’s compounds, there are several systemic medications available for the treatment of hirsutism today. These fall in to two groups, Hormonal treatments, which must be stopped if a woman would like to become pregnant and anti-androgens, which may cause birth defects. Most of these medications must be taken for at least six months before any improvement is detectable and they are not equally effective in all women.
As Follicum’s drug candidate is based on an endogenous peptide, no serious adverse effects are foreseen.