In approximately 5% of men, minoxidil causes redness and itching of the scalp skin. In most men this effect seems to be non-specific irritation by polyethylene glycol or other solvents; in some, however, specific type IV allergy against minoxidil is possible. Patients sometimes attribute specific systemic effects such as hypotension or increase of heart rate to minoxidil, but this is implausible because serum concentrations of minoxidil are very low after twice-daily topical administration.

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