Propecia linked to Erectile Dysfunction, Impotence, and Prostate Cancer

By Levin Simes
September 13, 2011

Propecia use has been linked to Erectile Dysfunction, General Sexual Dysfunction, Impotence, and Prostate Cancer

Propecia, known in its generic form as Finasteride, is a common treatment for mail pattern hair loss. In some instances, Propecia is also prescribed to curb issues linked to an enlarged prostate. Propecia was originally produced by Merck in 1992 , originally marketed under the name Proscar, for the purposes of treating benign prostate tumors and treating male pattern baldness.

In March 2011, an eye-opening study published by The Journal of Sexual Medicine showed a link between Propecia ingestion and various forms of sexual dysfunction. According to the study, it’s estimated that 15 percent of all men who used Propecia suffered some type of sexual dysfunction, even when they stopped taking the medication. In addition, anywhere between 5 to 23 percent of users may become impotent as a result of using Propecia. There were also statistically significant linkages between Propecia use and the development of breast tissue in men, diminished libido, and erectile dysfunction.

Propecia has also been linked to the development of several rare types of cancer in men. In 2009, a study conducted by The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency linked the use of Propecia to a markedly high increase in the incidence of male breast cancer. In June 2011, the FDA issued a report linking Propecia to an increased risk of developing high-grade breast cancer. While high grade prostate cancer is rare, it ‘s much more aggressive than low-grade prostate cancer, which is the most common form of prostate cancer.

How Propecia Works

Propecia works by attacking “Sex hormone-binding globulin”, known as SHBG. Generally, these molecules attach themselves to the testosterone produced in the body and prevent testosterone metabolism. In effect, SHBG blocks natural testosterone from activating and keeps the body in equilibrium. Given the fact that testosterone increases hair growth, Propecia attaches itself to SHBG to allow testosterone molecules to metabolize and work freely, substantially increasing the incidence of active testosterone in the body. As a result, 48% of Propecia users experienced visible hair growth.

By altering the natural balance of testosterone in the male body, the use of Propecia may lead to several unintended consequences. These unintended consequences were most directly noted in the article in the March of The Journal of Sexual Medicine, which chronicled Propecia’s linkages to sexual dysfunction, impotence, and breast development.


Sexual Dysfunction:

  • Erectile Dysfunction
  • Impotence
  • Diminished Libido
  • Abnormal Ejaculation
  • Decreased Ejaculatory Volume
  • Testicular Pain

Increased Incidence of Cancer:

  • Prostate Cancer
  • Male Breast Cancer

Other Adverse Effects:

  • Depression
  • Development of Breasts
  • Birth Defects( in children of mothers who handle tablets)

Propecia Information:

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