Does Propecia work?
The short answer is “yes”, or at least “yes in more than 80% of men”. Male pattern baldness is a very common condition, affecting around 6.5 million men in the UK. 50% of British men will experience some form of male pattern baldness over the age of 50 years old - but for some men hair loss can occur much earlier in life. A number of hair loss treatments are available, Propecia (finasteride) being the most effective. More than 80% of men who use Propecia experience an improvement, while 66% will benefit from renewed hair growth. If you wish to order Propecia or learn more about prescription treatments, visit our online clinic.
Clinical evidence for Propecia (finasteride)
In a five year medical study, two groups of men took a daily tablet of either finasteride (the active ingredient in Propecia) or a placebo (a dummy pill). The results were striking.
Over 80% of the men taking finasteride found that their hair loss stopped within 6 to 12 months, and 66% even reported regrowth. In contrast, the entire placebo group experienced hair loss. Furthermore, Men taking finasteride reported significant increases in hair density, and improvement in the appearance of their hair after treatment.
How long does Propecia take to work?
Propecia works rapidly but not instantaneously. You may need to take Propecia for up to 3 months before you see a benefit, although the best results may take up to 12 months to appear for some men. However the good news is Propecia stops hair loss in 8 out of 10 men who take it for 12 months - and two thirds of men taking Propecia enjoy some form of hair regrowth. However if no benefits have appeared after 12 months of taking Propecia you should consider seeking an alternative form of treatment. Visit our hair loss information page for further details.
Does Propecia work for everyone?
Propecia is most effective for men experiencing male pattern baldness. Although female pattern baldness exists (albeit far less commonly) there is no clinical evidence to support the use of Propecia in women, in fact it can be dangerous for women. Certain types of hair loss - such as alopecia totalis - cannot be treated by Propecia. (See Hair Loss Facts for more information.) Ultimately hair loss is a natural result of ageing: the older you grow, the less effective Propecia will become.
Does Propecia work permanently?
It is important to remember that Propecia is a hair loss treatment, not a cure. Once you stop taking Propecia your testosterone will start converting into DHT as before. Gradually your hair loss will resume, and it is likely that you will lose any hair that you have gained within 12 months of stopping the treatment.