About Post-Finasteride Syndrome

Overview

Post-finasteride syndrome (PFS) describes persistent sexual, neurological and physical adverse reactions in patients who have taken finasteride, a 5-alpha reductase type II enzyme inhibitor used to treat hair loss (under the brand name Propecia or generics) or enlarged prostate (Proscar or generics). Unfortunately, PFS is a condition with no known cure and few, if any, effective treatments. As an increasing number of men report their persistent side effects to health and regulatory agencies worldwide, medical and scientific communities are only beginning to realize the scope of the problem.

 

Reported PFS Symptoms

Sexual

Libido

  • Decreased or complete loss of sex drive

Erection

  • Erectile dysfunction, impotence
  • Loss of morning and spontaneous erections

Orgasm Disorders

  • Sexual anhedonia, loss of pleasurable orgasm

Ejaculatory Disorders

  • Decreased semen volume and force

Penis

  • Penile shrinkage and numbness
  • Peyronie’s disease

Testes

  • Scrotal shrinkage and numbness

Physical

Gynecomastia

  • Female-like breast development and enlargement

Fatigue

  • Chronic fatigue, listlessness

Muscle

  • Myalgia, including muscle pain
  • Myopathy, including muscle weakness, cramps, stiffness and tetany (twitching)
  • Myasthenia, including muscle weakness
  • Rhabdomyolysis, including muscle atrophy
  • Creatine kinase elevation

Skin

  • Decreased oil and sebum production
  • Chronically dry, thinning of skin
  • Melasma (brownish macules and patches that typically affect sun-exposed areas on the face)

Tissue

  • Lipoatrophy (localized loss of fat tissue)

Hearing

  • Tinnitus (ringing in the ears)

Metabolism

  • Increased fat deposition, obesity and elevated body mass index
  • Decrease in body temperature
  • Reduced HDL cholesterol, raised fasting glucose and triglycerides

Self-Harm

  • Attempted suicide
  • Completed suicide

Mental & Neurological

Memory

  • Severe memory/recall impairment

Cognition

  • Slowed thought processes
  • Impaired problem solving, decreased comprehension

Psychological

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Suicidal ideation

Emotional

  • Emotional flatness and anhedonia

Sleep

  • Insomnia
  • Obstructive sleep apnea