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Finasteride for Hair Loss 101: Why This Treatment Is Still a Go-To for Men’s Hair Loss

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So, your hairline is changing and you are seeing more of your scalp than you would like. What can you do about it?

Finasteride is the first-line oral treatment option for male pattern hair loss and has some pretty solid evidence that it can help.

In this article, we will cover the basics of Finasteride for hair and how you can get your hands on it.


What is Finasteride?

The American Hair Loss Association considers Finasteride the first-line treatment for men who want to reduce their hair loss.

Finasteride was FDA approved for medical use in 1992, so it has been around for a while.

Finasteride is considered to be in a class of medications called 5-alpha reductase inhibitors, or antiandrogens.

You may have seen Finasteride under the brand names Propecia or Proscar.

Propecia vs Proscar - What’s the difference?


Used for Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH).

Dosage is 5mg Finasteride per tablet.

First Finasteride product to be approved in 1992.


Used for Male Pattern Hair Loss.

Dosage is 1mg Finasteride per tablet.

Second Finasteride product to be approved in 1997.

What is Finasteride used for?

Finasteride was initially approved as Proscar in 1992 to reduce androgens in the prostate to help with a condition where the prostate is too large called Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia, or BPH.

During the trials of Finasteride for BPH, researchers were probably psyched to notice the “side effect” of increased hair growth and reduction of hair loss in the treated BPH patients.

This lead to Merck then hopping right back into the development of Finasteride for Male Pattern Hair loss and came out with Propecia in 1997.

Fast forward to today (2019), and Finasteride is still the only approved oral medication for Male Pattern Baldness (also known as Androgenic Alopecia.)


How does Finasteride work for hair loss?

It all comes back to a natural hormone called DHT, or Dihydrotestosterone.

Testosterone is great for guys (and small amounts for ladies), but the problem comes in when Testosterone is converted into too much DHT.

DHT is responsible for the miniaturization of hair follicles in the scalp, leading to shorter and finer hairs, in addition to shortening the growth phase of follicles.

Obviously, this means too much DHT is not good news for hair.

The enzyme that converts Testosterone into DHT is called 5-Alpha Reductase.

Finasteride has the ability to inhibit this enzyme, meaning less hair-ravaging DHT around.

Finasteride side effects:

As with most medications, there are going to be some side effects to look out for.

Some side effects of 1mg Finasteride can be:

Swelling of hands or feet, breast tenderness or swelling, dizziness, weakness, lightheadedness, headache, runny nose, or rash.

Also sometimes reported are sexual side effects including:

Lowered libido, trouble having an orgasm, and reduced semen volume.

Some studies report that the sexual side effects may continue even after discontinuation of the treatment.

However, in one study where men where 298 men were given the 1mg Finasteride dose, only 3 choose to withdraw from the study due to sexual side effects.

An analysis of multiple Finasteride studies finds that the rate of adverse sexual side effects is only about 2.1%-3.8%.


When does finasteride start working?

Finasteride may take up to 3 months to start working.

Take Finasteride once daily, with or without food, at about the same time each day.

Finasteride is a long term medication:

If the medication is stopped, all the hair that was maintained by the medication will most likely be lost within 12 months of stopping treatment.

Can women take Finasteride?

Finasteride is not approved for hair loss in women and should not be used in women or children.

Finasteride may have adverse effects on an unborn child, so women who are pregnant or looking to become pregnant should avoid coming into contact with Finasteride tablets at all.

Finasteride for hair loss dosage

Studies have shown that the 1mg dosage of Finasteride has the capability of reducing the dreaded DHT by up to 60%, leading to 86% of men reporting a stop to their hair loss.

To avoid any unnecessary increases in side effects, it is not advised to use more than the 1mg dosage to treat Male Pattern Hair Loss or Androgenic Alopecia.

Can you buy Finasteride online?

Finasteride can currently only be filled through a prescription from a licensed physician.

You can schedule an online consultation with our U.S. licensed physicians to identify if Finasteride is an appropriate medication for your hair troubles.

If you are a good candidate, we can ship your prescription Finasteride quickly and discreetly to your front door.


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