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What is finasteride?

Finasteride belongs to a class of drugs called 5-alpha reductase inhibitors. It lowers the concentration of a hormone called DHT within the scalp, which is widely considered the leading cause of hair loss in men.

Oral finasteride is generally a safe and effective treatment for most men suffering from hair loss. However, there are known potential side effects, including sexual dysfunction.

If you are concerned about the potential risks of oral finasteride, ask a dermatologist through XYON’s online consultation if Topical Finasteride, with SiloxysSystem™ Gel is right for you.

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Take as prescribed and recommended by your dermatologist.

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Unwilling to compromise?

Learn more about Topical Finasteride, with SiloxysSystem™ Gel. It’s specifically designed to maximize hair growth and minimize side effects.

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Using oral finasteride safely

As with any prescribed medication, there is always a chance you may experience negative reactions. Speak with your dermatologist if you are concerned about the side effects of finasteride or experience any side effects after starting oral finasteride.

Safety information

Finasteride is a prescription medication indicated for use in biological males at least 18 years of age. The FDA-approved dosage of finasteride for androgenetic alopecia is 1 mg/day taken by mouth.

Oral finasteride may not be suitable in the following instances: you have previously experienced an allergic reaction to finasteride or other 5-alpha reductase inhibitors, you currently have or have previously been diagnosed with prostate cancer, you currently have or have previously been diagnosed with liver disease or liver cancer. At present, this medication is not indicated for use in children or women.

Taking your medication

The recommended dosage of finasteride for men with androgenetic alopecia is typically 1 mg/day taken with or without food (or as otherwise directed by the prescribing physician). Do not attempt to adjust the prescribed dosage or stop taking this medication without consulting a physician. If you miss a dose, take your medication as soon as you are able to on the same day. Do not double the prescribed dose the following day.

Storing your medication

When possible, this medication should remain in the original packaging with patient information and the dispensing pharmacy’s contact information. Ensure that your medication is tightly secured between doses, stored at room temperature and kept away from direct sunlight. The expiration date indicated on your medication is informed by the dispensing pharmacy's quality control and safety regulations and included as a precaution. Consult the prescribing physician or pharmacy directly if you have concerns about using expired medication. Return any unused medication to the dispensing pharmacy or locate a drug take-back program near you.

Side effects (ORAL)

Most men do not experience serious or lasting side effects when using oral finasteride. However, this medication can cause adverse reactions in some individuals. Clinical trials have linked oral finasteride to sexual side effects including erectile dysfunction and decreased libido in some men. Additional adverse reactions may include: changes in ejaculatory volume or difficulty ejaculating; male breast enlargement; changes in breast tissue or discharge from nipples; breast pain or tenderness; testicular pain or tenderness; pain or difficulty urinating; changes in mood; new or worsened symptoms of depression. Some individuals may experience an increase in hair loss (shedding) shortly after starting treatment with finasteride. Certain individuals may continue to experience sexual side effects even after stopping the medication, although this is rare.

The following symptoms may indicate an allergic reaction to this drug and require medical attention: rash or skin irritation, tightness or pain in the chest, itching or swelling (especially of the face, tongue or throat), extreme dizziness, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, increased heart rate or palpitations. This is not a complete list of possible side effects; individual experiences will vary. If you notice other side effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist. In the US: Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or at It is important to report all adverse reactions that you believe to be associated with finasteride to the prescribing physician, even those not listed above. Seek medical attention immediately if you are experiencing acute shortness of breath, tightening of the airways or other signs of anaphylaxis.

Additional safety information and contraindications

(1) Considerations for women who are, or may become pregnant: Finasteride is a category X medication and must not be used during pregnancy. Finasteride may negatively impact the health of a developing fetus. Exposure to this drug has been linked to genital abnormalities in male infants. Women who are pregnant, breastfeeding or who may become pregnant should avoid handling this medication. Do not use finasteride if you are trying to conceive with a female partner.
(2) Drug interactions: There are no known drug interactions of clinical significance with finasteride. Always disclose a complete list of medications and/or supplements you are taking prior to starting treatment with oral finasteride.
(3) Risk of high-grade prostate cancer: 5-alpha reductase inhibitors such as finasteride may increase the risk of developing high-grade prostate cancer in some men. Individuals with a history of prostate cancer should have their serum prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels monitored by a physician while using oral finasteride.
(4) Blood donation: You should not donate blood while using oral finasteride. It is recommended that you refrain from donating blood for at least 1 month following your final dose of finasteride.

Oral finasteride is often prescribed to men who are not able to tolerate topical treatment.

Oral finasteride may be a more suitable option for those who have reacted negatively to topical drug treatment or those with an allergy to topical drug components. A physician may also recommend this alternative for men who have had limited success with topical finasteride.

While individual results will vary, finasteride can help enhance hair quality, overall density and appearance in men with pattern hair loss.

Typically, finasteride can help generate regrowth and prevent further hair loss. This medication aims to prolong the hair growth cycle, strengthening individual hairs and allowing them to grow longer. Finasteride has been attributed to new hair growth in select individuals, although this result is uncommon and should not be expected.

Any results achieved while on finasteride will only last as long as you continue to take the medication.

Finasteride reduces levels of a hormone produced by the body, called DHT (dihydrotestosterone). Elevated DHT at the scalp is considered a leading cause of hair loss in men. Hair loss will resume as the concentration of DHT within the scalp increases, typically within a matter of weeks after stopping treatment.

Oral Finasteride

*FDA oral finasteride monograph

FDA-approved to treat male-pattern baldness, clinically proven to lower DHT and improve hair growth with regular use.*

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