Hey bro, I'm glad you posted this. I'm almost 20 and have been losing my hair rather quickly for the past year or so. I knew my best chance to slow down or stop it was propecia, so I wanted to do some serious research before I considered taking it. At this point I am not on it, but I do plan to start in a similar fashion you did sometime soon. It's really funny, because out of all the research and all the forums I visited, the place I found the most pertinent yet surprising information was on propeciahelp.com, and if it weren't for that, I probably wouldn't even be considering taking it!
I posted on propeciahelp saying I was considering using the drug and was hoping someone could just direct me to good sources to learn the truth about Fin. One of the moderators there (shout out to Mew lol) did so and after what I read, I made a post on this site, along with throwing a few comments about what I found hear and there in other threads, but I never really got much response to what I was saying.
This is a copy of the thread I posted
Hey guys, after reading this article, I was left with some questions/concerns regarding Propecia dosages. Some of you probably know the info contained in it already, but I'll sum up the important parts.
"the percent change of DHT for placebo and .01 mg finasteride were identical and essentially zero within a reasonable statistical estimate. The change dropped by 60 % for a .05 mg dose and stayed that way for all dosages up to 5 mg. Thus a 20 times smaller dose than PROPECIA had the same effect on the DHT."
"Thus the fact that the dosage has been set by the manufacturer at a level far larger than the level measured as necessary for the main function, has not been reported publicly. Yet, the vastly lower dosages, reported in the data submitted to the FDA, would be expected to reduce the chance of side effects."
So, if such a small dosage of Fin has the same inhibiting effects on DHT, why would Merck recommend such a higher dosage??? Especially on a person who is just starting out on it. It makes no sense to me, seems like they are not only condoning, but recommending their consumers to take a USELESS risk.
Any thoughts on this would be appreciated!
Now, there were no efficacy tests done for dosages of 0.02mg-0.2mg (not sure why), but there were for 1mg and 0.2mg. However, the sample of participants (100) was small and the differences between the .2 and 1.0 dosages in the first two cases were not apparent and, in the photographic assessment, which showed a larger mean improvement for 1 mg, the values overlapped statistically at the 95% confidence level. ---> 68.7
+/- 17.3 and 54.9 +/- 17.
From the looks of it, Merck/FDA did not care to thoroughly look into the effectiveness of a lower dose. Why? Beats me.
Another excerpt from one of the articles which basically sums up the whole situation nicely.
"I cannot understand why saving money ``cannot be condoned'' when the cost is approximately $1000 per year, not covered by insurance, and the drug must be taken forever in order to preserve any hair growth.
There are no data proving that the lower dosages are ineffective while the physical T to DHT conversion measurements are flat from .05 to 5 mg. Considering the cost to take the drug for the rest of one's life and
that the drug is too expensive for most young men, an intelligent user might want to do a few month trial at lower dosage. Nothing to lose but some fuzz."
I've been reading about hair loss for about a month, I'm no expert, but so far this is what stuck out to me the most. I know for sure if I go on propecia, I'm starting at 0.25mg and taking it days apart to start.
Sorry for the lengthy post, but I feel like this is very important information and I haven't seen many people talk about it on here. You have an almost identical story to a guy that called in The Bald Truth radio show the other week. Had bad side effects at 1mg, went off, went back on at 0.25mg and had minor side effects at first but stuck it out and is good now. Only thing is that guy started to slowly up his dose, not sure why, even Spencer asked why he didn't just remain at the low dose if it were working.
I can't say it with certainty because I am no expert, but it seems like 0.25 definitely has way less chance for adverse sides, but the fact you and that other guy and probably other people did experience minor sides, tells me that the drug it still working (plus your having good results on it, and if your hair got worse you could always up the dose slightly).
If you read all of this, thanks bro haha. Peace.
(To anyone reading don't take my word for nothing check the links and do your own research)