What is Finasteride?
Finasteride is a drug used to treat male pattern hair loss, a common condition that involves hair thinning on the scalp
that often leads to a receding hair line or balding on the crown of your head. It affects some men from 20 years old
and is more common as men age, affecting the majority of males at some stage throughout their life.
is the generic name of the drug and is the active ingredient in the medication that works to reduce hair loss.
What is the difference between Finasteride and Propecia
Finasteride is the active ingredient in Propecia and is available in a generic, unbranded tablet. Finasteride and Propecia
are medically equivalent but Finasteride is available at a much lower cost.
Generic medicines contain
the same active ingredient and are equally effective and medically equivalent as the branded products but are
available at a lower price. Generic manufacturers have to demonstrate that they are medically identical to the
branded product - i.e. they offer the same quality, strength, stability and effectiveness.
What is alopecia?
Alopecia is another name that refers to male pattern hair loss. Normally, one hair grows from each hair follicle for
about three years. After this time, it is shed and is closely followed by a new hair growing from the same follicle.
For men with male pattern hair loss, the hair follicles become smaller over time and each hair is thinner and
falls out sooner than previously. Eventually, this can lead to hair follicles so small that the hair does not reach
the skin surface.
The main cause behind this change in the hair follicles is an androgenic hormone called
dihydrotestosterone. It is for this reason that this hormone is the target for drugs to treat alopecia.
the hair has been gone for extended periods of time, the hair may become permanently lost hence timely treatment is
How does Finasteride work?
The active component if Finasteride, works to inhibit an enzyme in the body called 5-alpha-reductase. This
enzyme usually converts testosterone into dihydrotestosterone, the more potent androgen that has a negative effect
on hair growth.
As a result of using Finasteride, the levels of the dihydrotestosterone hormone are lower and a
positive effect can be seen on the maintenance of hair and hair growth of men who suffer from male pattern hair
How long does it take to see results?
With regular Finasteride treatment you may begin to see the results within a few months, although it could take up to a
year to notice the full benefit. It is important that you continue treatment long enough to see the results on male
pattern hair loss, as the improvement won't occur overnight.
If you haven't noticed a benefit after using
Finasteride regularly for one year or more, further treatment is likely to benefit and it is recommended to stop use.
you decide to stop treatment with Finasteride, you will likely lose any hair growth gained in the previous 12 months of
treatment. It is recommended to discuss your options and the best solution for you with your doctor.