Hair loss is a common condition among men. Despite how common male pattern hair loss is, there are only a handful of proven methods to treat it. Propecia (Finasteride) is an FDA-approved oral medication that will stop the progression of hair loss.

What is Propecia?

Propecia (Finasteride) is an FDA-approved oral medication that will stop the progress of hair loss. Finasteride gained FDA approval in 1997, and ever since doctors have prescribed Propecia to help treat male pattern hair loss. Propecia may also be used with women who are not pregnant or unable to become pregnant.

How Does Propecia Work?

One reason for hair loss is the hormone Dihydrotestosterone (DHT). DHT is formed when an enzyme known as 5α- reductase (5α -R) bonds with testosterone. After forming, DHT will bind to hair follicles that are sensitive to the hormone, causing follicles to produce shorter and thinner hairs until hair production completely stops. Propecia is a drug that falls under the class of drugs known as 5-alpha-reductase inhibitors (5-ARI), and as a result, it will block the formation of DHT. Propecia is able to help prevent the damaging effects of DHT.


Propecia takes time in order to notice visible results. Typically, it will take six to twelve months of consistent dosing to see results. While Propecia has been shown to be effective for more than 80% of men, consulting with a doctor to discover the underlying cause of your hair loss is essential to finding the best treatment option.

It is also important to note that Propecia’s results can only be maintained through continued use of the drug. If the use of the drug stops, then the damaging effects of DHT will resume, and hair loss will begin again within 12 months of stopping Propecia.

Side Effects

Though this product is considered safe, as with any medication, there is potential for side effects from taking Propecia. Decrease in libido is the side effect reported in 2% of patients taking finasteride. For a complete list of side effects, please review the following scientific article published by Mayo Clinic.

Finding the Right Treatment for You

While Propecia can be an effective treatment for male pattern hair loss, it may not always be the right option to get you the best results. At West LA Hair, Dr. Melamed personally consults with each of his patients and oversees their treatment plans to ensure they receive the treatment most suited to their needs.

It is important to check with a healthcare professional before adding any additional supplements to your diet and use drugs or supplements as directed.

Schedule an appointment with Dr. Melamed today to discuss your hair restoration options!