F7 HALO: EVALUATION OF A GROUP PSYCHO-EDUCATIONAL PROGRAM FOR WOMEN WITH FEMALE PATTERN HAIR LOSS
Biondo S, Collins F, Sinclair R
Monash University, Melbourne, Australia and The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia

Background: The Halo program is a psycho-educational group intervention designed to address the psychological, quality of life and treatment adherence issues associated with female pattern hair loss (FPHL). The program comprises three elements: information provision regarding the nature, course and treatment of FPHL; education regarding the psychological impact of chronic, appearance-altering conditions such as FPHL; and cognitive-behavioural therapy for the treatment of the specific psychological difficulties associated with the condition such as anxiety, grief and a sense of helplessness. Objectives: In this paper, the success of the Halo Program will be discussed in regard to improvement in participants' quality of life, psychological well-being and treatment adherence. Methods: Halo participants completed pre- and post-program measures of depression, anxiety, quality of life, self-esteem, body image and treatment adherence. Participants also provided qualitative self-reports of their experience of female pattern hair loss. Results: The project identified a number of barriers to women obtaining accurate diagnoses and treatment, in particular, practitioners' dismissal of women's hair loss concerns and the lack of reliable patient-friendly information regarding FPHL. Participants reported improvements in psychological well-being and treatment adherence as a result of the Halo Program. Conclusion: These findings will be discussed in relation to strategies for bringing women to treatment and the on-going mental health of women experiencing hair loss.