By Dr. Mallika Marshall

BOSTON (CBS) — Hair loss can be distressing for both men and women, but engineers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison have developed a new technology that could one day help reverse baldness.

The device stimulates the skin with low-frequency, painless electric pulses that coax hair follicles that have essentially fallen asleep to resume hair production.

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Instead of requiring a bulky battery pack, the device is powered by the person’s day to day movements, and it is so small it could be worn under a regular baseball cap.

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They tested the technology on hairless mice and found that it stimulated hair growth as effectively if not more than medicines used to treat hair loss but without the side effects.

Researchers say it could be used for people in the early stages of baldness, not necessarily for those who have been bald for years.

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They hope to test the device on humans in the near future.

Dr. Mallika Marshall