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Generic Name: Finasteride, Brand Name: Propecia


INTRODUCTION

 

Whenever patients consult a doctor for male pattern baldness, they will be prescribed for Propecia which is a popular treatment for this ailment. It has also been approved by the USA Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat male pattern hair loss. Finasteride is the active ingredient and the generic name of Propecia. Bearing the brand name Proscar, Finasteride was originally invented for the treatment of Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH) or enlarged prostate in men. It also reduces the chances of prostate cancer. It is only during the research on Proscar when scientists came to know about a side effect of Finasteride that retards, stops and reverses male pattern hair loss on the vertex of the scalp.

Propecia (Finasteride) as an antiandrogen acts by blocking the action of an enzyme called type II 5 alpha reductase. This particular enzyme is responsible for converting testosterone into dihydrotestosterone (DHT). A mounting DHT level paves the way for BPH and hair loss. So, when Finasteride binds to receptors for 5 alpha reductase and makes it useless, it creates obstacles in the conversion of testosterone to DHT. A decreasing DHT level means the contraction of the enlarged prostate gland and prevention of DHT in the scalp from causing hair loss.

Propecia is meant for oral administration and available in film-coated tablets. These tablets contain 1 mg of Finasteride and a number of inactive ingredients such as lactose monohydrate, microcrystalline cellulose, pregelatinized starch, sodium starch glycolate, hydroxypropyl methylcellulose, hydroxypropyl cellulose LF, titanium dioxide, magnesium stearate, talc, docusate sodium, yellow ferric oxide, and red ferric oxide.

INDICATIONS AND USAGE

 

Propecia (Finasteride) is indicated for the treatment of androgenetic alopecia or male pattern baldness. Men between 18 to 41 years of age are being prescribed for Propecia to treat mild to moderate hair loss on the vertex and the anterior mid-scalp area. However, it is not indicated for use in women and children. Finasteride with the brand name Proscar is indicated to treat Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia (BPH) in lower doses and the prostate cancer in higher doses.

Propecia is orally administered in the form of 1mg tablet once a day. It can be taken with or without food. You need to use Propecia daily for 3 months in order to experience any improvement in your condition. The continued use is more important to sustain benefits; otherwise you’ll be quickly reverted to your previous state inside 1 year of leaving the treatment. So, you have to commit yourself for a longer period time in case of Propecia treatment. If using Finasteride doesn’t show any noticeable changes even after 6 months, it will be better to discontinue the medicine.

CONTRAINDICATIONS

 

Propecia (Finasteride) is contraindicated in women who are pregnant or may become pregnant in the near future. As Finasteride as a Type II 5-reductase inhibitor prevents the transformation of testosterone to DHT, it may cause severe damage to the external genitalia of a male unborn baby of a pregnant woman who takes Finasteride. It is also contraindicated in patients who have hypersensitivity to any ingredient of this medication.

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