Understand the potential risks of hair loss prescriptions. Finasteride is a pill that can treat hair loss. It’s approved by the FDA for treating the most common kind of hair loss in men. It's generally safe but it can also cause serious side effects, including but not limited to an allergic reaction, breast cancer, sexual dysfunction, and high-grade prostate cancer.
Most patients find that their problems with sexual function resolve when they stop taking the medicine. But a minority of patients find that their problems with sexual function may persist after stopping the medicine. Older patients may be at greater risk of this side effect impacting sexual function. Women of childbearing age shouldn’t take finasteride or touch broken tablets, as finasteride can cause birth defects.
Read the package insert that comes with the medicine for a full list of side effects and warnings. For a complete list of alternative treatment options, please refer to our FAQs.