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Propecia vs. Proscar

Medical and Pharmacy Editor:

Are Propecia and Proscar the Same Thing?

Propecia (finasteride) and Proscar (finasteride) are both forms of finasteride, a 5a-reductase inhibitor.

A difference is that Propecia is prescribed as a 1 mg tablet indicated for the treatment of male pattern hair loss (androgenetic alopecia) in men only, while Proscar is prescribed as a 5 mg tablet used to treat symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) in men with an enlarged prostate.

What Are Possible Side Effects of Propecia?

Common side effects of Propecia include:

  • impotence,
  • loss of interest in sex,
  • trouble having an orgasm,
  • abnormal ejaculation,
  • swelling in your hands or feet,
  • swelling or tenderness in your breasts,
  • dizziness,
  • weakness,
  • feeling like you might pass out,
  • headache,
  • runny nose, or
  • skin rash.

What Are Possible Side Effects of Proscar?

Common side effects of Proscar include:

  • impotence,
  • loss of interest in sex,
  • trouble having an orgasm,
  • abnormal ejaculation,
  • swelling in your hands or feet,
  • swelling or tenderness in your breasts,
  • dizziness,
  • weakness,
  • feeling faint,
  • headache,
  • runny nose, or
  • skin rash.

In some men, Proscar can decrease the amount of semen released during sex. This is harmless. Proscar may also increase hair growth. The sexual side effects of Proscar may continue after you stop taking it. Talk to your doctor if you have concerns about these side effects.

What is Propecia?

Propecia (finasteride) is a 5a-reductase inhibitor indicated for the treatment of male pattern hair loss (androgenetic alopecia) in men only. Propecia is available in generic form.

What is Proscar?

Proscar (finasteride) is an inhibitor of steroid Type II 5a-reductase, that works by decreasing the amount of a natural body hormone dihydrotestosterone (DHT) that causes growth of the prostate, and is used to treat symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) in men with an enlarged prostate. Proscar is available in generic form.

What Drugs Interact With Propecia?

Propecia may interact with other drugs.

What Drugs Interact With Proscar?

Proscar may interact with conivaptan, imatinib, isoniazid, antibiotics, antifungal medications, antidepressants, heart or blood pressure medications, or HIV/AIDS medicine.

How Should Propecia Be Taken?

Propecia is available in strength of 1 mg tablets; the recommended dose of Propecia is one tablet (1mg) taken once daily. In general daily use for three months is necessary before benefit is observed. Withdrawl of treatment leads to reversal of effect within 12 months.

How Should Proscar Be Taken?

The recommended dose of Proscar is one tablet (5 mg) taken once a day.

Reviewed on 6/13/2018

Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP

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