Minoxidil is used to stimulate hair growth and to slow balding. It is most effective for people under 40 years of age. Minoxidil has no effect on receding hairlines. It does not cure baldness; generally new hair is lost within a few months if the drug is stopped.
Minoxidil is an antihypertensive vasodilator medication. It also slows or stops hair loss and promotes hair regrowth. Minoxidil is generally well tolerated, but common side effects include burning or irritation of the eye, itching, redness or irritation at the treated area, as well as unwanted hair growth elsewhere on the body. Side effects of oral minoxidil may include swelling of the face and extremities, rapid and irregular heartbeat.