Propecia and Finasteride have commonly prescribed medications for hair loss in men, specifically male pattern baldness. However, it may be confusing to men who are taking this drug for the first time, as the names are often interchangeable. Read on to find out what is the difference between Propecia and finasteride, and if there are any side effects!
At a glance
Propecia is actually the brand name of the generic medicine finasteride. It is typically used to treat the symptoms of male pattern hair loss (androgenic alopecia). Propecia is most effective in men with mild to moderate, but not complete, hair loss. It usually comes in the form of an oral tablet that you take by mouth. It is an effective treatment for male hair loss, with 9 out of 10 men experiencing positive results.
Are Propecia and finasteride the same?
Yes, it’s just that Propecia is the branded version of the oral medicine finasteride. Finasteride oral tablet is available in both brand-name and generic versions.
What is the distinction between brand-name and generic medications? When a pharmaceutical company researches, develops, manufactures, and distributes a new medicine, they give it a branded name and apply for a patent. The patent gives them exclusive rights to the medicine until the patent expires.
When the patent expires, other manufacturers can apply for a license to produce and market their own versions of the medicine, known as a generic version. As the arduous work of R&D has already been done, generics manufacturers can provide non-branded versions of the medicine at a lower price.
Hence, generic medications are exactly the same as the original brand in terms of the medicine, strength, indication (what it is used for), quality, and route of administration. Because generic drugs have the same efficacy but are less expensive, clinicians may prescribe generic drugs over branded drugs when a generic version is available.
Is there any difference between Propecia and Finasteride?
Technically, both medicines are the same in terms of active ingredients, strength, and results.
However, do take note that while generic drugs include the same active ingredients as brand-name medications, the non-active ingredients may differ. This is why different versions of the same generic medicine frequently change in flavour, colour, form, or size. Since the active ingredients and strength of both types of drugs are the same, the differences in non-active substances should not influence a person’s treatment.
How does Propecia/finasteride work?
Male pattern hair loss is characterized by shrunken hair follicles and an increase in the androgen dihydrotestosterone levels in the scalp (DHT). Propecia and finasteride successfully prevent the conversion of testosterone to DHT. This stops the process that causes the shrinking of hair follicles and reverses the balding process.
How long does it take for Propecia/finasteride to work?
Do consult your physician to find out what is the recommended dosage for your hair loss condition. The medication should take 3 to 6 months to begin working at a recommended dose of one tablet (1mg) daily. If no benefit is seen after 12 months, the treatment should be stopped.
To reap the benefits, it is recommended to consume it at least once every day. If treatment is discontinued, the positive effects begin to fade after 6 months, with a return to normal levels of hair loss occurring after 9 to 12 months.
As always, your dosage would depend on factors such as:
- your age
- the illness being treated
- the severity of your ailment
- any other medical issues you may have
- how you respond to the first dose
Is Propecia/finasteride suitable for my hair loss condition? Are there any side effects
The drug is only available via a doctor’s prescription and is not available over-the-counter. It is not prescribed for use in children younger than 18 years of age and is also not suitable for use in women.
Before our doctors prescribe Propecia, they will always conduct a detailed first consultation to find out more about your medical history and determine the real cause of your hair loss, allowing them to formulate the right treatment plan for you. For instance, if you have certain health conditions like liver or prostate cancer, Propecia will not be suitable for you.
Generally, there are no side effects or adverse allergic reactions for the majority of the patients. However, if you start to experience symptoms like swelling of your lips, tongue, throat, or face, depression, or difficulty breathing, do seek medical help immediately.
Eeva Hair Loss Treatment Clinic
Our holistic and personalized approach to hair loss treatment in Singapore comprises:
- Proven in-clinic treatments and protocols
- Personalized skincare and haircare
- Clinically approved medications or supplements
This 3-step comprehensive approach ensures optimal results in your personal enhancement journey with us!
To safeguard your privacy, we provide a private hair chamber in our clinic. Each session is designed to rejuvenate and nourish your scalp and hair. Find out more about Eeva’s hair loss treatments in our guide to hair loss.
Start your hair regrowth journey with Eeva
Our doctors firmly believe that technology and procedures are merely tools in the holistic care of patients. You can rely on us to handle your concerns with discretion and professionalism. We listen to each and every one of our patients, and no one will be overlooked. Our clinic does not believe in hard-sell practices. We are down-to-earth, practical, and dedicated to producing results.
We strive to provide unbiased and proven guidance to ensure that you receive the most ideal treatment possible that fits your preferences, budget, schedule, and needs. Contact us now to ensure all your hair concerns are comprehensively taken care of!
- Kaufman KD;Olsen EA;Whiting D;Savin R;DeVillez R;Bergfeld W;Price VH;Van Neste D;Roberts JL;Hordinsky M;Shapiro J;Binkowitz B;Gormley GJ; “Finasteride in the Treatment of Men with Androgenetic Alopecia. Finasteride Male Pattern Hair Loss Study Group.” Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, U.S. National Library of Medicine, pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/9777765/.