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Earlier this year, UK scientists suggested a connection between football headers and dementia.

While the Football Association investigates those claims, a new link has emerged between the long-term and prolonged heading of footballs and premature hair loss.

Dr Edward Ball, a leading UK hair transplant surgeon, said that when footballers head a ball they’ll connect with it in the area where the hairline meets the forehead.

He said repeated trauma to this region can cause ‘chronic inflammation’, which in turn can then lead to alopecia. Now – as more and more footballers talk about their hair transplant surgery procedures – Dr Ball is calling for the effects to be studied, saying it has so far been an area neglected by science.

Dr Ball, Medical Director of London’s The Maitland Clinic, said: “We know that trauma causes inflammation, and we know that inflammation is a factor in many causes of both scarring and non-scarring alopecias.

“And when a footballer heads a ball, they typically connect with it where the hairline meets the forehead.