Finasteride, also known as Propecia (brand name), is an oral prescription medication that was originally created to help males with an enlarged prostate. Studies later proved that finasteride is able to treat male and female pattern baldness with great efficacy. Patients have typically been prescribed an oral form of finasteride but that is changing.
Topical finasteride has been shown to significantly improve hair count in individuals with androgenetic alopecia, offering a potential alternative to oral finasteride with potentially reduced systemic side effects. It may be a suitable option for those concerned about the systemic effects of oral finasteride or looking for a topical formulation for hair loss treatment.
DHT is a hormone called dihydrotestosterone that gives men their male characteristics. When the male body converts testosterone to DHT it causes the hair follicles to miniaturize, which then causes male pattern baldness.
In recent studies, 0.25% topical finasteride showed similar effect to 1 mg of the oral form (recommended dose for the treatment of hair loss). When applying this medication topically, it can localize the reduction of DHT levels in the scalp. In studies done in the 7th World Congress on Hair Research, a Dutch research group reported that topical finasteride decreased the scalp DHT level more than oral finasteride. Many clinical studies have been done confirming this research.
Different Varieties of Topical Finasteride
When it comes to topical finasteride, there are a few different types out there, so choosing the right one can be a bit tricky. The most common options include solutions, foams, and serums. Each one has its own unique qualities and benefits.
- Solutions: These are usually in the form of spray-on liquids that spread easily across the scalp. They’re quite popular because they make application quick and convenient.
- Foams: Similar to solutions, foams are also easy to apply but may have a lighter consistency. This can make them less greasy compared to solutions, which some users find more comfortable.
- Serums: Serums generally have a thicker consistency and are designed to target specific areas effectively. They may feel more substantial on the scalp, providing a different user experience compared to solutions or foams.
It’s important to note that your choice should depend on factors like your personal preference, hair type, and ease of use. It might take some experimenting and testing out different varieties before you find the one that works best for you.
For instance, if you have oily hair, you might prefer a foam, as it tends to be less greasy. On the other hand, if you have dry hair or a sensitive scalp, a serum might provide better moisturization and protection.
Moreover, beyond just their physical properties, these formulations also affect how the medication is absorbed by your skin. For example, a spray solution might dry faster than a liquid, while a foam could take longer to soak in due to its lighter consistency.
It’s clear that different types of topical finasteride offer diverse experiences in terms of application and absorption. Choosing the right variety depends on understanding your individual needs and preferences. By considering these factors, you can confidently select the most suitable type for your hair and scalp health.
Understanding how different forms of topical finasteride vary in their application and effects sets the stage for exploring their specific advantages in addressing hair loss.
Advantages of Topical Finasteride for Hair Loss
When dealing with hair loss, considering treatment options that reduce systemic exposure and focus on specific affected areas is crucial. This is where topical finasteride gains a significant edge. Let’s explore two key benefits of using topical finasteride for hair loss: minimized systemic exposure and targeted effects.
Minimized Systemic Exposure
One of the significant advantages of using topical finasteride over its oral counterpart is the minimized impact on the whole body. Oral finasteride can lead to higher levels of the medication in the blood, potentially causing systemic side effects like sexual dysfunction. However, studies have demonstrated that topical application results in lower maximum plasma concentrations and has less impact on serum DHT (dihydrotestosterone) levels. DHT is a hormone that contributes to hair loss in individuals genetically predisposed to this condition. By reducing concerns about systemic side effects, topical finasteride provides a more targeted approach to combating hair loss without posing a significant risk to overall health.
Topical finasteride offers a targeted approach to restoring hair growth by delivering the medication directly to the affected scalp and hair follicles. Unlike oral administration, which circulates the drug throughout the body, topical application focuses specifically on the areas where it’s needed most. By zeroing in on the scalp, topical finasteride can potentially enhance its effectiveness for stimulating hair regrowth. This localized treatment may also minimize any potential off-target effects associated with systemic exposure.
Understanding these advantages helps individuals make informed decisions about their hair loss treatment, considering both effectiveness and safety as vital factors in their choice of therapy.
By examining these advantages in detail, we gain valuable insight into how topical finasteride presents a compelling treatment option for tackling hair loss while minimizing potential risks associated with traditional oral medications.
Recommended Use of Topical Finasteride
When finasteride is used topically, minoxidil (also known as Rogaine) is also important to add to your regimen. Together, this duo can do much more for hair restoration than just one medication alone. This combination has also been suggested for hair density maintenance after patients see a noticeable difference with oral finasteride. The oral pill can typically be stopped once topical finasteride is prescribed but it’s best to
If starting with topical finasteride, hair growth is typically noticeable after three to four months, although it can take up to nine months to see the full effects of topical finasteride.
Topical finasteride is helping men maintain fuller, thicker hair without having to take the pill orally, which comes with risk. Rare side effects include decreased sexual drive, dizziness and swelling in hands and feet.
Our physicians prescribe custom topical formulas that include both finasteride and minoxidil. To learn more about hair loss treatments in SLC, Ut, call (801) 776-2220 or contact us HERE.
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If you are someone who is experiencing hair thinning or loss beyond lifestyle behaviors, UFP Hair Restoration offers non-surgical and surgical options for hair restoration.
Contact us to schedule a hair restoration consultation or call 801-776-2220.