We clarify doubts and break myths about both drugs: Dutasteride and Finasteride. Do you know them? Have you already tested its effectiveness?
Finasteride and Dutasteride are medications that are used for different types of alopecia, although they are better known for the use of androgenetic alopecia (AA), both female and male. They are very safe drugs, with great efficacy for the treatment of AA, with a very high safety profile and with a very low risk. Unfortunately, they are sometimes better known for their rare side effects than for their great efficacy and high safety. To look for a simile, it is like what has happened with the vaccine against COVID, where more has been said about the very rare side effects than about all the benefits and high safety index that it offers.
How does it work?
Both Finasteride and Dutasteride are drugs known as antiandrogens, whose mechanism of action is to selectively block a receptor (5 alpha-reductase) found in the hair follicle and in the prostate. Dutasteride inhibits more powerfully and for a longer time, which is why it is more powerful.
Breaking myths about Finasteride and Dutasteride
- Can only men take it? More than one patient, after going to the capillary dermatology consultation and prescribing Finasteride or Dutasteride, calls us anguished after a while saying that the doctors have been wrong because the drug says it is for men and for the prostate. And the answer is always the same:
– We were not wrong !
It is a medication that women with androgenetic alopecia can take and always under medical prescription. There are multiple studies that support its safety and effectiveness in female alopecia.
- What do women who take them have to take into account? Women of childbearing age should take into account that as they are antiandrogen drugs, they should not become pregnant while taking this medication, as it could affect the development of the fetus if it were a male, by not developing the male sexual organs correctly. In turn, once the treatment with Finasteride is stopped, the woman must wait 1 month to become pregnant and 6 months in the case of Dutasteride, since it has a longer half-life and is longer in our body.
- Being an antiandrogen, does it increase the risk of prostate cancer in men or breast cancer in women?
In the case of men, not only does it not increase the risk of prostate cancer, but it can even prevent it. And in the case of women, it does not increase the risk of any type of cancer according to multiple scientific studies.
- If I start this treatment is it for life? For us this answer is NO. Of course, the / the patient who starts with an antiandrogen treatment should be at the beginning at least 1-2 years, to try to recover as much hair as possible. Once this time has passed, we recommend lowering the dose, and many times with low doses or taking breaks and maintaining with topical treatments or mesotherapies, it is enough. Of course it depends on each case, and that is why the follow-up of a dermatologist specialist is so important to assess each case.
- Are they very expensive drugs? Are they funded? Due to their high degree of efficacy and high safety, they are relatively inexpensive drugs. The prices range approximately 20-30 euros for the monthly treatment.