Hailed as one of the trusted pharmacological solutions for hair loss, Finasteride has been widely used by men who are not so lucky on the hair department. However, it has come to light that being rewarded with a head if hair comes more than just its retail price. A lot of men are left despondent as they face another problem as a side effect – erectile dysfunction. If that’s not worse enough, recent findings showed that it causes the sexual side effect to linger.
Fin and your follicles
There have been a multitude of questionable remedies for baldness peddled in the market since ancient times. From the ashes of seahorses to snake oil, follicularly-challenged hopefuls have been clinging to one empty promise after another.
So we fast-forward a couple of years later and we are given the restorative effects of Finasteride. It came into the market as a treatment for benign prostatic hyperplasia or an enlarged prostate. It was by coincidence that its restorative effects for hair loss was discovered.
Sold under the brand name Propecia or Proscar, Finasteride works by blocking the conversion of testosterone to a more potent form which is dihydrotestosterone (DHT). DHT is partly responsible for prostate enlargement and it can also cause the hair to thin out and shed. As the amounts of DHT proliferates in the body it will only make it worse for your hair, as it could lead to a bald pate if left unchecked.
Finasteride comes into the hair loss market prescribed in small doses for men with hair loss. It has been FDA-approved for hair loss when it showed after 3 double blind studies that it is able to create a significant improvement in terms of hair restoration.
Fin Ain’t Fun
Finasteride has made a lot of men happy when it improved hair volume and controlled the progression of the hair loss. The catch here is that Finasteride is not like your antibiotics where you just have to take it for 5-7 days and you’re good. This drug would have to be taken as a maintenance to actually maintain the results. However, a lot of men are starting to notice a certain side effect. Longer exposure eventually resulted in erectile dysfunction.
Also referred to as impotence, erectile dysfunction is the inability to achieve or maintain an erection which is a problem more common in older men. Younger men who experienced this was highly concerned hoping that it reverts once the drug is discontinued. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Prolonged use of Finasteride puts them at a greater risk for persistent erectile dysfunction (PED).
A study showed that men exposed to Finasteride experience PED even months or years after stopping the drug. These recent findings also suggest that physicians should be mindful of the debilitating sexual dysfunction and exposure to the drug when prescribing it to patients.
What are my options now?
When hope seems to slip away from your fingers it helps to look further because when you do, you might see that there are other ways you can rely on. One of the treatments that can replace Finasteride is hair transplant.
Considered as a more drastic method to restore hair, it is also established as one that is highly reliable. What is important is that you need to have the qualifications of a good candidate for surgery, and none of the disqualifications.
At first look, a hair transplant can be very daunting, especially when it involves scalpels, sutures or any instrument that breaks skin integrity. In the past, the practice earned a bad reputation due to crude techniques which only made the patients look worse and fake. It ended looking like futile attempt and a sore waste of money. However, thanks to recent developments the industry was able to turn this reputation a total 360.
Hair transplant used to result in doll-like hairs sticking out in awkward angles which was far from flattering. Fortunately, experts were able to develop techniques to distribute grafts, insert them in the right angle and fashion a hairline in a natural-looking way.
Certain techniques, like the tricophytic closure, is able to conceal scarring better in FUT (follicular unit transplantation). This means that you no longer have to deal with that horizontal scar running boldly across the back of your head.
Robotics has also worked its way to the hair transplant scene when ARTAS which provides for a more fine-tuned FUE (Follicular Unit Extraction) approach. Although with its limitations, it is deemed to be a promising option.
Laser is also a recognized treatment for hair loss that earned favour for the fact that it is non-invasive. Questioned for its effectiveness or the amount of improvement it is able to create compared to other hair loss solutions, laser treatment is then relegated to a complementary treatment. It is able to stimulate hair growth, though not as dramatic and fast, but it can promote faster healing and improvement when used after a hair transplant.
If Finasteride has failed you, or if you are left doubtful due to the increasing incidence of erectile dysfunction, know that not all hope is lost. Know how you stand when hair transplant is brought in the picture. Talk to a certified hair surgeon today.
Visit Sydney Hair Transplant, or call for an appointment now and let’s map out your road to restoring your hair!