Saying that the problems related with hair loss are highly factual today is probably like saying nothing at all. It’s absolutely no surprise that pattern baldness and thinning hair are highly feared in today’s society where healthy hair is an integral part of the whole concept of human beauty. Women think that balding men are less attractive and there aren’t too many things that ladies themselves fear as much as losing hair. Picture an attractive and successful person how you see them in your head. There’s little chance of them being bald, isn’t there?
With that being said, it’s no wonder that there’s currently a whole industry working (and earning huge money) on treating hair loss. Hair transplant clinics, pharmaceutical companies, manufacturers of various herbal medicines – all of these own a significant share of the market. But looking at it all from a regular customer’s perspective, can we single out the most effective and well-reputed means of treating hair loss? Yes, we can – and this means is exactly wat we will tell you about in today’s article dedicated to finasteride drug. What it is, how does it work and what are its pros and cons – these are just a few of the questions you will have answered by the end of this page.
What is finasteride?
Finasteride is a medication used in the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia and pattern baldness. It was initially developed to help men get rid of symptoms caused by enlarged prostate, such as difficulty urinating, frequent urination and impeded urinary flow. However, in the course of testing it also proved to be highly effective against hair loss triggering a 30% improvement when taken for an extended period of time (6 months or more). To be completely honest we should note, however, that finasteride is no miracle cure reverting the process of aging and curing hair loss forever as it only works as long as you are taking it. If the therapy with this medication is canceled or paused, hair problems are likely to come back.
What is Propecia?
Propecia, along with Proscar, are two of the most popular finasteride-based meds currently sold in the world. They are both manufactured by Merck & Co, Inc. with two main differences between them being the actual dosage of finasteride they contain and the conditions they treat. 1 Propecia pill contains 1 mg of finasteride. This medication is usually prescribed to patients suffering from male pattern baldness. Proscar, on the other hand, is mostly used for treating BPH as it contains a higher dose of finasteride – 5 mg per pill.
Finasteride hair loss therapy
Using finasteride for hair loss treatment is usually regarded as a simpler, safer and cheaper alternative to hair transplant surgery and traditional treatments. There aren’t any complicated instructions on using it – in most of the cases you will be advised to take 1 pill a day, before or after meals according to your preferences as food intake doesn’t alter the way finasteride works by any means.
There is a list of conditions, however, that can serve as contraindications to therapy with Propecia. Please, take the time to time to read this through if you are considering treatment with any finasteride-based pills. First and foremost, this medication is known to cause birth defects, so it should not be consumed by pregnant women or women planning to become pregnant in the nearest future. Even more, since finasteride can potentially be absorbed through skin, pregnant women should avoid touching or handling broken or crushed Propecia or similar pills at all times. In fact, even though recent clinical studies show that finasteride is also effective in female patients with hair loss, it hasn’t been approved for use by women yet.
Moreover, if you are testing for prostate cancer while on Propecia, don’t forget to mention this to your doctor. Finasteride may lower Prostate Specific Antigen (PSA) levels in your blood, which may alter the results of the test.
Other common side effects of finasteride include decreased sex drive and fertility due to lower production of semen, body hair growth, allergic reactions and breast tenderness and enlargement. Although these are extremely rare, please, contact your healthcare provider for advice in case you notice the symptoms of any of the abovementioned conditions.
Post finasteride syndrome
There are numerous articles available online and in media describing ‘post finasteride syndrome’, which generalizes the possible side effects in men who used finasteride-based medication for treating male pattern baldness or benign prostatic hyperplasia. Even though it’s still unclear whether these articles are evidence-based or not, we feel obliged to mention this in our overview. All in all, some patients have reported a significant decrease in libido and quality of erection that persisted even after they had canceled therapy with this medication. Even though this could be a purely natural condition resulting from the fact that most patients taking finasteride are over 50 or even 60 years of age, we feel this shouldn’t be left unnoticed. Whether post finasteride syndrome is real or not, we strongly suggest that you read more on it prior to agreeing to start therapy with Propecia, Proscar or any similar medications.
Hair loss therapy with Finasteride: Propecia or generics?
Of course, this article wouldn’t be complete if we failed to list at least a few of the generic finasteride medications that you can consider as alternatives to Merck’s bestseller pill. Except Propecia finasteride is also marketed under such brand names as Finpecia, Appecia, Finalo and many more. These generic medications are usually manufactured in India where Propecia patent is no longer active, which allows the companies making them to sell their products much cheaper if compared to brand-name Propecia while also keeping the quality of their meds high. What is also very cool about generic finasteride is that most online pharmacies sell it prescription free, which saves you from the hassle of numerous unpleasant visits to your doctor. Note, however, that there are lots of counterfeit medications sold on the Internet, so we strongly recommend you to shop for generic finasteride only in reliable online drugstores with positive independent ratings and enough customer reviews.
Hope this article has managed to answer some of the questions you had about finasteride and using it to treat hair loss. If you have any additional questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to consult other sections of our website – there’s a high chance you will find the information you need there.