Finasteride is a 5-alpha reductase inhibitor used in treating certain medical conditions found in men. In some cases it can be used to ease symptoms of benign prostatic hypertrophy. In other cases it helps in reducing the effects of male pattern baldness.
In the case of Propecia, Finasteride works by inhibiting the scalp’s creation of certain hormones that have been linked to the loss of hair. The medication does not cure balding, but can stop the symptoms while the drug is actively being taken.
Who is Propecia For?
Propecia, a marketed version of Finasteride, is designated as a treatment option for men. Women and children are generally not prescribed due to it’s interaction with hormones in the body.
Propecia is a prescription based drug and is carefully regulated in terms of quantity and regularity of dosage. Individuals taking Propecia should be mindful of their doctor’s specific instructions, and should not take more or less than recommended.
Are There Side Effects to Finasteride?
Hormone inhibitors often have effects that are wider in scope than their intended purpose. One of the most common and significant side effects of Finasteride is sexual dysfunction. The hormones associated with baldness and enlarged prostate are also connected to sexual health. As a result, when those hormones are inhibited sex drive and function is at risk.
The following is a list of common side effects (as sourced from Schmidt and Clark):
- less desire for sex
- difficulty in achieving an erection (erectile dysfunction)
- decrease in the amount of semen
- problems with ejaculation
- testicular pain
- male breast cancer
- prostate cancer
Links to Prostate Cancer
According to PubMed Health: “Taking finasteride may increase the risk that you will develop high-grade prostate cancer (a type of prostate cancer that spreads and grows more quickly than other types of prostate cancer). Talk to your doctor about the risks of taking finasteride.”
Canadian Cancer Warning: “Health Canada is informing health professionals and the public that the prescription drugs finasteride and dutasteride may be associated with an increased risk of developing a serious form of prostate cancer known as high-grade prostate cancer. High-grade prostate cancer is an aggressive type of prostate cancer that grows and spreads more quickly than low-grade prostate cancer. This type of cancer is rare, and the increased risk seen with finasteride and dutasteride drugs is still considered very small.” -Â hc-sc.gc.ca
Your Legal Options
If you’ve been taking Propecia or another Finasteride based medication, you may have experienced some of the serious health risks described above. Depending on the nature of your situation, you may be entitled to legal compensation.
Determining who is at fault for your injury can be difficult. The matter requires a careful look at how you were prescribed, how carefully you were monitored, and how much warning the parent company Merck had given at the time of your prescription.
To have a real chance at getting compensation you will need to be connected to the proper attorneys working on this case. “Neighborhood lawyers” simply cannot compete against giant pharmaceutical companies. Utilize our free lawyer consultation service to have your case assessed. We can connect you to the right attorneys quickly.