Finasteride is a synthetic hormone drug from the group of 5-alpha-reductase inhibitors. It is used to treat hair loss in men on the top and anterior regions of the middle scalp. Finasteride is also known as Propecia in the United States and UK.
Form of release
Finasteride is produced in a tablet dosage form. The tablets are round, biconvex, and covered with a film membrane. The content of the active ingredient of the drug in one tablet is 5 mg.
Pharmacological effect of finasteride
The active substance of the drug, finasteride, is the only active ingredient that has a moderate androgenic effect.
This medication includes a unique intracellular enzyme that stops the conversion of the male sex hormone testosterone into biologically active dihydrotestosterone.
The primary indication for the prescription of Propecia is androgenetic alopecia.
It is necessary to take into account cases in which Finasteride should not prescribed; these include:
- Hypersensitivity to the composition
- Female gender
- Age less than 18 years
With great care, Finasteride can be used in those with renal failure or obstructive uropathy, or in the elderly.
Instructions for use of Finasteride
The tablets are to be taken orally, and chewing or chopping them is prohibited. The time of reception does not matter, and the consumption of food does not affect the absorption of the active substance. It is desirable to identify a suitable time to take Finasteride so that, each day, the administration occurs approximately at the same time.
According to the instructions, the daily dose is 5 mg of finasteride—that is, one tablet. An increase or decrease in dosage is not recommended. If necessary, the dose level can be changed, but only by the attending physician on an individual basis. The treatment course is long, on average taking six months. Therapy can be prolonged for several months or repeated after a short break.
The action of the tablets develops gradually, with a stable effect achieved after about three months of regular intake. Significant reduction in symptoms and improvement in the process of urination is observed at six to seven months of treatment.
With renal failure, a dose adjustment is not required.
Side effects of finasteride
Hormonal drugs often cause adverse reactions, especially with prolonged use. Against the backdrop of long-term therapy in men, the use of Propecia may reduce libido. Sexual function is usually restored after the end of the treatment course.
There have also been complaints about the following:
- An allergic skin reaction such as itching, redness, rashes, and/or swelling of the face
- Problems with ejaculation
- Soreness and/or enlargement of the mammary glands
- Pain in the testicles
- Depressive mental state
Most unpleasant symptoms occur at the beginning of treatment, then disappear on their own as the body adapts to the drug. In some cases, there is an individual display of intolerance, typically expressed via an acute allergic reaction. In this case, the urgent cessation of therapy is required.