Propecia was heralded as a major breakthrough for the 50 million men suffering from male pattern baldness when it hit the market in 1997. But with its popularity has come mounting concerns about its serious side effects, and not only while patients take it, but for months or even years after they stop. As studies link Propecia use to impotence, depression and even suicide, users are suing the drug maker. Unlike its topical predecessor minoxidil (Rogaine), which required two messy applications daily and could take hours to dry, Propecia could be discretely swallowed with the promise of both slowing hair loss and thickening new growth. “It was the first and is still the only -approved pill to treat pattern hair loss,” says dermatologist Shani Francis, MD, director of the Hair Disorders Center for Excellence at University of Chicago. “Men could just pop a pill once a day and it worked. It was a huge deal.”18 years later, the pink octagonal pill remains a popular tool in dermatologists’ arsenal, with balding men (and some women) spending more than a quarter-billion dollars annually on Propecia and millions more on generic varieties of the active ingredient finasteride. In a study just published in Northwestern University researchers concluded that all 34 published clinical trials evaluating finasteride’s safety were inadequate and provided insufficient information about the drug’s sexual side effects. In online support forums such as Propeciahelp.com, men complain of impotence, bent or shrunken penises, reduced or discolored semen and enlarged breasts. Propecia, with its active ingredient Finasteride, is without a doubt one of the biggest breakthroughs in hair loss research in recent times. Whereas solutions such as Rogaine (active ingredient Minoxidil) achieve hugely variable and often questionable results, Propecia has certainly helped many men around the world to slow, or even stop the progress of their hair loss. Several studies have been conducted to look at whether Propecia works for hair loss in men. One study looked at using it in men for male pattern baldness with hair loss at the very top of the head. At the beginning, the men who took Propecia grew new hair, while the men who took the placebo continued to lose hair. After about a year, the increase in new hair growth stopped for the men on Propecia, and these men started to slowly lose their hair again. However, the hair loss was much slower for the men taking Propecia than for the men who were taking the placebo.
Please note: This article was published more than one year ago. The facts and conclusions presented may have since changed and may no longer be accurate. Questions about personal health should always be referred to a physician or other health care professional. THURSDAY, March 10, 2011 (Health Day News) -- Drugs frequently prescribed to treat hair loss or an enlarged prostate may contribute to irreversible sexual dysfunction in men, new research finds. Use of dutasteride (Avodart) and finasteride (Proscar and Propecia) were linked to erectile dysfunction, depression and loss of libido in a review of existing studies. In a small percentage of cases, symptoms persisted even after the medication was stopped. For those men, "it's a life sentence," said lead researcher Abdulmaged M. Almost everyone who takes these drugs experiences some of these side effects, Traish said. Traish, a professor of biochemistry and urology at Boston University School of Medicine."No sex. "But, some experience it more drastically than others," he added. IF YOU'RE A BIG TEN SPORTS FAN, you've probably seen Charles K. moving up and down the Big House field during Michigan home games. The now 31-year-old didn't play football—he played sax in the Wolverine marching band. Early on, Charles was a "shy band nerd," but over the course of his college career he morphed into another kind of player. "By my senior year," he concedes, "I'd earned something of a reputation among my friends for dating multiple girls at once." After graduating and moving to Chicago, Charles planned on playing the field for at least a few more years. But then something happened that he hadn't counted on: His hair started falling out. "Here I was, a single guy just starting life in the big city, and I was going bald. I kept thinking, " Charles decided to start taking Propecia, the only FDA-approved oral medication for male-pattern baldness.
Apr 13, 2012. Both Propecia and Proscar may cause male infertility and/or poor semen quality. This side effect lessens or goes away after men stop taking the. Sep 16, 2014. According to FDA trials, 83 percent of men who used finasteride for two. The most common side effects in men who take finasteride range.