Once believed to be the revolutionary saving grace for men suffering from male pattern baldness, Propecia (generic: finasteride) has begun to receive a generous share of both criticism and scrutiny. Recent evidence lends weight to the long-suspected link between Propecia and catastrophic complications. Merck’s popular hair loss prescription medication has reportedly been linked to the development of sexual dysfunction, depression and cancer. Studies suggest that these complications may be do to the presence of finasteride, a 5-alpha reductase inhibitor.
Propecia is a prescription medication indicated for the treatment of male pattern hair loss (androgenetic alopecia) in men only. Its unique formula boasts the ability to restore natural hair growth to the vertex and the anterior mid-scalp area. In doing so, Propecia utilizes finasteride, the active ingredient responsible for such results.
Finasteride belongs to a class of medications known as 5-alpha reductase inhibitors. As such, finasteride treats male pattern hair loss by preventing the conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone (DHT) in the scalp area, which prevents hair growth. DHT is a substance in the body that can shrink hair follicles until they no longer produces visible hair. Accordingly, Propecia promotes steady hair growth by prohibiting the further production of DHT.
However, studies suggest that Propecia treatment my coincide with several sexual side effects that can interfere with a man’s quality of life in a profound way. Studies acknowledged that some men experienced certain sexual side effects. These men reported one or more of the following: less desire for sex; problems with ejaculation; testicular pain; difficulty in achieving an erection; and, a decrease in the amount of semen.
Compounding the issue further are allegations that suggest Propecia is linked to depression. In the event that a man experiences any of the previously mentioned sexual dysfunctions, they exhibit an increased propensity for the development of severe depression. As a result, Merck has seen an influx of Propecia lawsuits filed against them.
These complications are founded in the data provided by a recent study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine. According to the study, subjects reported new-onset persistent sexual dysfunction associated with the use of finasteride: 94% developed low libido, 92% developed erectile dysfunction, 92% developed decreased arousal, and 69% developed problems with orgasm. The mean number of sexual episodes per month dropped and the total sexual dysfunction score increased for before and after finasteride use according to the Arizona Sexual Experience Scale (P < 0.0001 for both). The mean duration of finasteride use was 28 months and the mean duration of persistent sexual side effects was 40 months from the time of finasteride cessation to the interview date.
In addition to the development of persistent sexual dysfunction, Propecia has been linked to high-grade prostate cancer. As a result, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a Safety Communication to alert healthcare professionals that the Warnings and Precautions section of the labels for the 5-alpha reductase inhibitor (5-ARI) class of drugs has been revised to include new safety information about the increased risk of being diagnosed with a more serious form of prostate cancer. Due to the severe nature of this complications, men may contact a lawyer at The Senators (Ret.) Firm, LLP in regards to their potential Propecia prostate cancer lawsuit.
Many doctors continue to prescribing Propecia to their patients because they are not yet aware of the seriousness of the potential side effects. According to the FDA, Merck’s annual sales of Propecia are well over $400 million.
“Over the years, I have prescribed Propecia to my patients and still do – I absolutely had no idea of its serious side effects and I do try to keep up with all the latest medical news,” says general practitioner Kenneth Kochmann, M.D. “Had I known, I would have never prescribed it in the first place,” says Dr. Kochmann whose practice is located in Lutherville, Md.
Do I Have a Propecia Lawsuit?
The trial lawyers at The Senators (Ret.) Firm, LLP have decades of experience navigating through complex legislative and regulatory issues and litigating high stakes cases all over the nation. Our law firm focuses on the representation of plaintiffs in Propecia lawsuits. We are currently accepting new cases in all 50 states.
If you or a loved one has been injured by Propecia, you may be entitled to financial compensation. For a free case review, please click the link below or call toll free 24 hrs/day 1-(949) 557-5800.