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When it comes to hair loss you may have heard of finasteride. You may have also heard it can help with hair loss. So the question is, is it true? What’s the science behind this drug and how can it help with androgenic alopecia?

What is Finasteride?

Finasteride is referred to as a DHT-blocker or anti-androgen because it works to inhibit the enzyme 5a-reductase which converts testosterone into DHT – the sex hormone responsible for attacking hair follicles and causing pattern baldness. To find out more about how DHT affects your hair follicles, see our article ‘What Is DHT? How Does it Affect Hair Loss?

How Effective Is Finasteride for Hair Loss?

Finasteride was approved by the Food and Drug Association (FDA) in 1992 as an effective method of hair loss treatment and evidence of its success is well established. There have been many clinical studies over the years demonstrating the efficacy of Finasteride for hair loss. For example, in one of the largest clinical studies from 1998 to 2000, 1,878 men aged 18 to 41 were treated with propecia (Finasteride) against a placebo. Those who received a 1 mg daily dose of propecia found they had higher baseline levels of hair growth compared to those in the placebo and control groups.

Can Women Take Finasteride?

Women can take Finasteride to prevent DHT (a sex hormone that affects female pattern baldness), however, because the hair loss medication can harm pregnant women and those breastfeeding, it’s not recommended. There have also not yet been large clinical studies examining the effect of Finasteride on women over an extended period of time, so only in extreme circumstances is it advised for post-menopausal women to try the drug.

Are There Negative Side Effects?

There’s a small chance of some sexual dysfunction when taking Finasteride. However, we have to emphasise, the chance of this is relatively low. Only 1 – 2% of all patients report this as a side effect and any symptoms do subside upon ceasing the medication.

What’s the Best Way To Take Finasteride?

At Hair By Science we’ve found our clients achieve the best results when taking a multi-faceted approach to Finasteride. We combine 1mg Finasteride capsules with our regrowth serum which features Minoxidil, Dutasteride (another alpha reductase inhibitor), melatonin, and latanoprost.

In addition to the finasteride capsules and regrowth serum, the HBS packages can include a derma roller to improved absorption, dietary supplement capsules with all the essential growth vitamins, and a shampoo and conditioner to improve the overall health of the hair, increasing thickness and creating an environment that promotes growth.