The Post-Finasteride Syndrome Foundation’s primary mission is to fund research on the characterization, underlying biologic mechanisms and treatments of post-finasteride syndrome (PFS). Other goals include generating public awareness of PFS and providing support for patients suffering from the condition.
Adverse drug reaction reports worldwide
PFS research studies published
Known suicides worldwide
Doctors & researchers speaking out
Nations warning of PFS
Men under the age of 40 who use finasteride for alopecia are at risk for suicide if they develop persistent sexual adverse effects and insomnia.
An important pattern of symptoms was common among all cases who committed suicide in the setting of finasteride use – insomnia and persistent sexual dysfunction after medication discontinuation. Insomnia and fatigue/tiredness were some of the most debilitating symptoms… Men under the age of 40 who use finasteride for alopecia are at risk for suicide if they develop persistent sexual adverse effects and insomnia.
—Finasteride and Suicide: A Postmarketing Case Series: Dermatology, January 14, 2020
[A]t least 17 countries…have warned…of the potential for depression, sexual side effects, or both.
Emerging post-marketing reports of persistent depression and sexual side effects have led to growing concerns about the safety of 5α-reductase inhibitors and prompted product labeling changes in many regulatory jurisdictions. Since 2008, at least 17 countries including the United Kingdom and the United States have warned prescribers of the potential for depression, sexual side effects, or both with finasteride.
Two subjects—eight percent—committed suicide during or after the study.
While the sexual side effects of 5ARIs are well known, there may be persistent genitourinary, physical, psycho-cognitive, anti-androgenic and penile vascular changes after 5ARI discontinuation. Use of 5ARIs for treatment of AGA may lead to persistent sexual, genitourinary, physical, psycho-cognitive, and anti-androgenic sequelae even after cessation of 5ARI therapy… Two subjects (8%) committed suicide during or after the study.
—Penile vascular abnormalities in young men with persistent side effects after finasteride use for the treatment of androgenic alopecia: Translational Andrology and Urology, April 2020
FDA is concerned that use of finasteride by pediatric patients may pose long-term safety risks.
Finasteride inhibits Type II 5(alpha)-reductase, which metabolizes testosterone to the potent androgen 5(alpha)-dihydrotestosterone. FDA is concerned that use of finasteride by pediatric patients may pose long-term safety risks regarding growth, development and sexual function.
—FDA response to Merck & Co.’s citizen petition requesting that finasteride be added to the List of Approved Drugs for Which Additional Pediatric Information May Produce Health Benefits in the Pediatric Population: May 2000
SOMERSET, N.J., Sept. 7, 2015 – Data from preclinical and clinical studies have provided substantial evidence that 5α-Reductase inhibitors (5α-RIs) such as finasteride and dutasteride cause loss or reduction of libido, increase the risk of erectile dysfunction and ejaculatory dysfunction, and may contribute to the onset of depression. These agents interfere with the biosynthesis and […]
SOMERSET, N.J., Aug. 26, 2015 – Twenty-five percent of men currently taking finasteride or dutasteride (brand names Proscar and Avodart) for the treatment of benign prostate enlargement (BPH), appear not to benefit from taking these medications. Those prescribed Propecia or Avodart for male pattern hair loss are also at risk for adverse events elicited by […]
Aug. 4, 2015 Dear Friends: By many accounts, we’ve reached a tipping point on post-finasteride syndrome awareness within the medical community. The most significant advancement occurred in March, when the U.S. National Institutes of Health added PFS to its Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center. “Studies are under way to understand the safety profile of […]
SOMERSET, N.J., July 23, 2015 – New research in a leading pharmacology journal concludes that young men who take finasteride for hair loss may be at risk of contemplating suicide. The study, published in the July issue of Pharmacotherapy and titled “Persistent Sexual Dysfunction and Suicidal Ideation in Young Men Treated with Low-Dose Finasteride,” analyzed […]
SOMERSET, N.J., July 15, 2015 – The Southwest Brain Bank (SWBB) in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio has received its first donation of the brain and spinal cord of a post-finasteride syndrome (PFS) patient and formed a program to collect and study post-mortem human brain […]