The drug is Propecia, used to treat male baldness, may potentially be causing a bigger problem. Sexual dysfunction.
The drug, known generically as Finasteride, is also sold by Merck as a different pill. Merck sells it under the name Proscar, and it is used to to treat an enlarged prostate. One dose of Propecia contains 1 milligram of Finasteride; one dose of Proscar contains 5 milligrams.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has announced label changes for both drugs, saying they could cause sexual side effects in the men who take them.
Propecia was approved for male pattern baldness by the FDA in 1997, while Proscar was approved in 1992 for treating bothersome symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), which is an enlarged prostate. Both are approved for only men.
Propecia labels will now include warnings for libido disorders, ejaculation disorders, and orgasm disorders that continued for men even months after stopping the drug, the FDA says.
Proscar’s label will include a “decreased libido” warning that continues after drug discontinuation. Both drugs’ labels will also include a new description of reported cases of male infertility and poor semen quality that improved after patients stopped taking the drug.
The labels of both drugs will also carry about a description of reports of male infertility and/or poor semen quality that clears up or improves after the drugs are stopped