Finasteride (fin-AS-ter-ide) is used to treat urinary problems caused by an enlarged prostate gland (benign prostatic hyperplasia, BPH). It is also used to lower the risk of needing surgery to treat BPH. It may be used with another medicine (doxazosin) to lower the risk of worsening BPH. Some doctors are also prescribing Finasteride for baldness and as a preventive measure against prostate cancer. Finasteride is for use by men only.
Take Finasteride by mouth with or without food. Continue to take Finasteride even if you feel well. Do not miss any doses. Using Finasteride at the same time each day will help you remember to take it.
Check with your doctor if any of these most common side effects persist or become bothersome: decreased amount of semen per ejaculation, decreased sexual desire or ability, impotence.
Seek medical attention right away if any of these severe side effects occur: severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); breast enlargement, lumps, pain, or tenderness; nipple discharge; testicular pain.
Finasteride may cause drowsiness or dizziness. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use Finasteride with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.
Finasteride may cause dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting; alcohol, hot weather, exercise, or fever may increase these effects. To prevent them, sit up or stand slowly, especially in the morning. Sit or lie down at the first sign of any of these effects.
Finasteride may increase the risk of certain birth defects, including abnormal formation of genitalia in male fetuses.
Finasteride is coated to prevent contact with Finasteride while handling undamaged tablets. The coating is not effective if the tablets are damaged, broken, or crushed. Women who are pregnant or may be pregnant should avoid contact with damaged, broken, or crushed tablets. If contact occurs, tell your doctor at once.
Finasteride may interfere with certain lab tests, including PSA tests. Be sure your doctor and lab personnel know you are taking Finasteride.
Finasteride may cause harm to the fetus. It is not known if Finasteride is found in breast milk. Finasteride is not approved for use in women.
Some medical conditions may interact with Finasteride.
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:
If you are planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding; If you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement;
If you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances; If you have a narrowing or blockage in the urinary tract, prostate cancer, nerve or muscle problems of the bladder, a bladder infection, severe trouble urinating, or if you are unable to urinate; If you have a history of increased serum prostate-specific antigen (PSA) levels, abnormal liver function tests, or liver problems.
There are no known drug interactions with Finasteride. However, it is possible that there may be drug interactions with Finasteride that are not yet known. Therefore, you should talk with your pharmacist or healthcare provider about the possible drug interactions that may apply to your situation.
If you miss a dose of Finasteride, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.
Store Finasteride at room temperature, below 86 degrees F (30 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep Finasteride out of the reach of children and away from pets.