Propecia works by interacting with hormones and therefore the risk of experiencing side effects is quite possible. It is recommended that you try the treatment for a month to determine your tolerance levels before commencing further treatment. If you find discomfort or no results, there is also a gel available that contains Propecia that can be applied to affected areas of the scalp.
There have been several findings that warn against prolonged use of Propecia because of sexual side effects that include erectile dysfunction, ejaculation problems, poor semen quality, decreased libido and infertility. Some men have experienced these symptoms even after they’ve stopped taking Propecia.
The pharmaceutical company Merck claim that less than two in one hundred men experienced these sexual side effects and that the issues disappeared after discontinuing treatment. However the FDA’s clinical trials disputed these claims with reports that a total of 59 cases suffered sexual dysfunction for at least 3 months from the periods of 1998 – 2011.
The Swedish Medical Products concluded in 2008 that the drug could cause sexual dysfunction, even after cessation of treatment, and the results were similar to that of United Kingdom’s Medical and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency. As of January 2013, there were 139 lawsuits against Merck regarding persistent sexual dysfunction in the USA. Hundreds more are pending and are seeking compensation as they claim that Merck didn’t disclose suffice information on their safety label about the long-term side effects.
Disproportionate Hormone Levels
Another clinical trial suggested the active ingredient Finasteride might disturb other levels of DHT throughout the body beyond the hairline and prostate. It can potentially alter the proportion of hormone levels that disrupts the signals to the nerves in the penis and chemistry in the brain. If Finasteride enters the brain, it can affect person’s sleep, anxiety, memory and brain cell regrowth.
High Grade Prostate Cancer
One of the greatest risks regarding the use of Propecia is the increased possibility of high-grade prostate cancer. The use of this medication already disguises the levels of PSA in prostate cancer tests, which can lead to faulty readings and is a particular cause of concern for older men. As of June 2011, the FDA distributed a safety announcement of revised warning and precaution labels on Propecia as well as other 5 alpha reductase inhibitors after the results from two clinical trials – the 7 year Prostate Cancer Prevention (PCPT) Trial and the 4 year Reduction by Dutasteride of Prostate Cancer Events (REDUCE) trial.
Another study revealed that patients of Propecia are at risk of developing breast cancer 200 times more than the general population. Indicators that the breast changes are severe and may possibly be breast cancer include breast pain, nipple discharge and breast structure.
Other less adverse side effects may include testicle pain, headaches, swelling in hands and feet, dizziness, skin rash and running nose. If they are causing you concern, seek the help of your doctor. If you experience swelling of your face, hives or difficulty breathing, you may be having an allergic reaction. Seek emergency help immediately.
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