Can I Buy Finasteride Without Going To The Doctors?

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Here at Assured pharmacy, we’ve had patients call in to ask if they can buy Finasteride tablets without visiting their doctor. The simple answer is yes, you can buy Finasteride tablets without going to your doctor’s surgery.

But to help you fully understand the question and answer, here’s a little bit more info about Finasteride.

Propecia & Finasteride

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What is Finasteride?

Finasteride, also known as Propecia, is indicated for the treatment of men with male pattern hair loss (androgenetic alopecia) to increase hair growth and prevent further hair loss.

The Legal Category of Finasteride is POM – Prescription Only Medicine.

This means that you can only get Finasteride via a prescription written by a doctor. You cannot buy it by simply walking into any pharmacy or online without a prescription.

How can I buy Finasteride without going to the doctors?

From the comfort of your home or office, you can have a virtual consultation with a doctor.

During this consultation, the doctor will ask you about your general health and any medications you are currently taking. This way, the doctor can assess whether it is appropriate and safe for you to take Finasteride tablets or not.

It is essential, during your consultation, that you tell the doctor about all existing or previous medical conditions. You should also tell the doctor the names of all medications you take. These medications may have been prescribed by another doctor or you simply bought them over the counter from a pharmacy or health store. You should also tell the doctor if you have tried taking any medications in the past for hair loss.

Once the doctor feels it is appropriate for you to take Finasteride tablets, the doctor will write a prescription for the Finasteride tablets and pass the prescription to a pharmacist electronically, by fax or post or issue you with the prescription directly.

Once the pharmacist receives the prescription, the pharmacist will dispense the Finasteride tablets according to the directions in the prescription.

You should never buy Finasteride tablets without first speaking to a doctor and/or another healthcare prescriber

At Assured Pharmacy, we do have an in-house doctor and pharmacist. Once the Finasteride tablets are dispensed by our in-house pharmacist, they will be posted to you by Royal Mail 1st Class delivery.

To start your virtual consultation with our in-house doctor, click here. Make sure you choose the quantity you require as we offer options for 1 to 6 months’ supply.

After you receive your tablets, what next you ask?

 

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How do I take my Finasteride tablets?

The recommended dosage is one 1 mg tablet taken once daily. ‘Propecia’ may be taken with food or on an empty stomach.

There is currently no evidence that an increase in the dosage taken will result in increased effectiveness.

The effectiveness and duration of treatment should continuously be assessed by the treating physician i.e. the doctor who wrote your prescription. Generally, three to six months of once-daily treatment are required before evidence of stabilisation of hair loss can be expected. Continuous use is recommended to sustain benefit. If treatment is stopped, the beneficial effects begin to reverse by six months and return to baseline by 9 to 12 months.

 

What is the mode of administration?

Tablets should be swallowed whole and taken with a drink of water if needed.

The tablets can also be crushed if needed and dispersed in water or soft food like yoghurt if you have swallowing difficulties. You should note that this is an unlicensed mode of administration. Crushed or broken tablets of Finasteride should not be handled by women of childbearing potential.

What is the composition of Finasteride tablets?

Finasteride tablets are available as a generic or as the brand Propecia. One film-coated tablet contains 1 mg of Finasteride.

Excipient(s): Lactose monohydrate 95.58 mg.

The generic Finasteride is reddish brown, round, biconvex, film-coated tablets, marked ‘F1′ on one side and plain on the other side.

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Orlistat

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Priligy

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Propecia

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Finasteride

From: £17.99

Who cannot take Finasteride?

Women, children and adolescents cannot take Finasteride tablets.

Anyone who is allergic to or is hypersensitive to Finasteride or any of the excipients can also not take Finasteride tablets.

Finasteride 1mg tablets should not be taken by men who are taking Finasteride 5 mg Tablets or any

other 5α-reductase inhibitors for benign prostatic hyperplasia or any other condition.

As this medicinal product contains lactose-monohydrate, patients with rare hereditary problems of galactose intolerance, Lapp lactase deficiency or glucose-galactose malabsorption should not take Finasteride tablets.

Why should women not handle Finasteride tablets?

Finasteride is contra-indicated in women due to the risk in pregnancy. This is because of the possibility of absorption of finasteride and the subsequent potential risk to a male foetus.

Small amounts of finasteride have been recovered from the semen in subjects receiving finasteride 5 mg/day. It is not known whether a male foetus may be adversely affected if his mother is exposed to the semen of a patient being treated with finasteride. When the patient’s sexual partner is or may potentially be pregnant, the patient is recommended to minimise exposure of his partner to semen (e. g. by using condoms).

 

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What side effects can I expect from taking Finasteride tablets?

Mood alterations including depressed mood, depression and, less frequently, suicidal ideation have been reported in patients treated with Finasteride 1 mg. If a patient notices any of these symptoms, the patient should stop taking the Finasteride tablets and seek medical advice immediately.

In clinical studies with Finasteride 1 mg Tablets in men 18-41 years of age, the mean value of serum prostate-specific antigen (PSA) decreased from 0.7 ng/ml at baseline to 0.5 ng/ml at month 12. This decrease in serum PSA concentrations needs to be considered if, during treatment with Finasteride Tablets 1mg, a patient requires a PSA assay. In this case, it should be considered to double PSA value before making a comparison with the results from untreated men.

Long-term data on fertility in humans are lacking, and specific studies in subfertile men have not been conducted. The male patients who were planning to father a child were initially excluded from clinical trials. Although animal studies did not show relevant negative effects on fertility, spontaneous reports of infertility and/or poor seminal quality were received post-marketing. In some of these reports, patients had other risk factors that might have contributed to infertility.

Normalisation or improvement of seminal quality has been reported after discontinuation of finasteride. Patients who are planning to father a child should consider stopping treatment.

The adverse reactions during clinical trials and/or post-marketing use are listed in the table below. The frequencies of undesirable effects are the following:

very common (≥1/10),

common (≥1/100 to <1/10),

uncommon (≥1/1,000 to <1/100), rare (≥1/10,000 to ≤1/1,000), very rare (<1/10,000),

not known (cannot be estimated from the available data).

The frequency of adverse reactions reported during postmarketing use cannot be determined as they are derived from spontaneous reports.

Immune system disorders:

Not known: Hypersensitivity reactions, including rash, pruritus, urticaria and angioedema (swelling of the lips, tongue, throat, and face).

Cardiac disorders:

Not known: Palpitation

Psychiatric disorder:

Uncommon**: Decreased libido, depression

Hepatobiliary disorders:

Not known: Increased hepatic enzymes.

Reproductive system and breast disorders:

Uncommon**: Erectile dysfunction, ejaculation disorder (including a decreased volume of ejaculate)

Not known: Breast tenderness and enlargement (gynecomastia), Testicular pain, infertility*

* See section above

** incidences presented as a difference from placebo in clinical studies at Month 12

Drug-related sexual undesirable effects were more common in the finasteride-treated men than the placebo-treated men, with frequencies during the first 12 months of 3.8% vs 2.1%, respectively. The incidence of these effects decreased to 0.6% in finasteride-treated men over the following four years. Approximately 1% of men in each treatment group discontinued due to drug-related sexual adverse experiences in the first 12 months, and the incidence declined thereafter.

Do I need to report any suspected adverse reactions?

It is important that you report any adverse reactions that you suspect may have been because of taking Finasteride tablets. This is because it allows for the continued monitoring of the benefit/risk balance of the medicinal product.

Patients and healthcare professionals are asked to report any suspected adverse reactions via the Yellow Card Scheme. You can find out more information about the Yellow Card Scheme by clicking here.

 

Hair-Loss (1)

 

How does Finasteride work?

Finasteride is a 4-azasteroid, which inhibits human Type 2 5α-reductase (present within the hair follicles) with greater than 100-fold selectivity over human Type 1 5α-reductase, and blocks the peripheral conversion of testosterone to the androgen dihydrotestosterone (DHT). In men with male pattern hair loss, the balding scalp contains miniaturized hair follicles and increased amounts of DHT. Finasteride inhibits a process responsible for miniaturization of the scalp hair follicles, which can lead to a reversal of the balding process.

Is there any evidence that Finasteride works?

According to the Summary of Product Characteristics of Finasteride, provided by the Marketing Authorisation holder, the efficacy of finasteride 1mg tablets was demonstrated in three studies in 1879 men 18 to 41 years of age with mild to moderate, but not complete, vertex hair loss and frontal/mid-area hair loss. In these studies, hair growth was assessed using four separate measures including hair count, ratings of photographs of the head by an expert panel of dermatologists, investigator assessment, and patient self-assessment. In the two studies in men with vertex hair loss, treatment with finasteride 1mg tablets was continued for 5 years, during which time patients improved compared to baseline in men treated with finasteride 1mg tablets were generally greatest at 2 years and gradually declined thereafter (e.g., hair count in a representative 5.1 cm2 area was increased 88 hairs from baseline at 2 years and 38 hairs from baseline at 5 years), hair loss in the placebo group progressively worsened compared to baseline (decrease of 50 hairs at 2 years and 239 hairs at 5 years). Thus, although improvement compared to baseline in men treated with finasteride 1mg tablets did not increase further after 2 years, the difference between treatment groups continued to increase throughout the 5 years of the studies. Treatment with finasteride 1mg tablets for 5 years resulted in stabilization of hair loss in 90% of men based on photographic assessment and in 93% based on investigator assessment.

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In addition, increased hair growth was observed in 65% of men treated with finasteride 1mg tablets based on hair counts, in 48% based on photographic assessment, and in 77% based on investigator assessment. In contrast, in the placebo group, gradual hair loss over time was observed in 100% of men based on hair counts, in 75% based on photographic assessment, and in 38% based on investigator assessment. In addition, patient self-assessment demonstrated significant increases in hair density, decreases in hair loss, and improvement in the appearance of hair after treatment over 5 years with finasteride 1mg tablets (see Table below).

Percent of Patients Improved as Assessed by Each of the 4 Measures

Year 1†

Year 2††

Year 5††

FINASTERIDE 1MG TABLETS

Placebo

FINASTERIDE 1MG TABLETS

Placebo

FINASTERIDE 1MG TABLETS

Placebo

Hair Count

(N=679) 86

(N=672) 42

(N=433) 83

(N=47) 28

(N=219) 65

(N=15) 0

Global Photographic Assessment

(N=720) 48

(N=709) 7

(N=508) 66

(N=55) 7

(N=279) 48

(N=16) 6

Investigator Assessment

(N=748) 65

(N=747) 37

(N=535) 80

(N=60) 47

(N=271) 77

(N=13) 15

Patient Self- Assessment: Satisfaction with appearance of hair overall

(N=750) 39

(N=747) 22

(N=535) 51

(N=60) 25

(N=284) 63

(N=15) 20

† Randomization 1:1 FINASTERIDE 1MG TABLETS to placebo

†† Randomization 9:1 FINASTERIDE 1MG TABLETS to placebo

In a 12-month study, in men with frontal/mid-area hair loss, hair counts were obtained in a representative 1 cm2 area (approximately 1/5 the size of the area sampled in the vertex studies). Hair counts, adjusted to a 5.1 cm2 area, increased by 49 hairs (5%) compared to baseline and by 59 hairs (6%) compared to placebo. This study also demonstrated significant improvements in patient self-assessment, investigator assessment, and ratings of photographs of the head by an expert panel of dermatologists. Two studies of 12 and 24 weeks duration showed that a dose 5-fold the recommended dose (finasteride 5 mg daily) produced a median decrease in ejaculate volume of approximately 0.5 mL (-25%) compared with placebo. This decrease was reversible after discontinuation of treatment. In a study of 48 weeks of duration, Finasteride 1 mg daily produced a median decrease in ejaculate volume of 0.3 mL (-11%) compared with a 0.2 mL (-8%) decrease for placebo. No effect was observed on sperm count, motility or morphology. Longer-term data are not available. It has not been feasible to undertake clinical studies, which directly elucidate the possible negative effects on fertility. However, such effects are judged as very unlikely (see also 5.3 Preclinical safety data).

 

Hair-Loss-Image-2

 

Is there anything else I need to know about Finasteride?

When speaking to any healthcare professional e.g. another doctor or pharmacist, it is essential that you tell the person that you have been started on Finasteride.

If you are prescribed Finasteride by someone who is not your regular GP, it is a good idea to inform your GP that you have been prescribed Finasteride. This way, should your GP (or another healthcare professional) need to prescribe or issue you with a new medication, they can ensure that the new medication does not interact with the Finasteride tablet or is not in a similar drug class as Finasteride.

That said, no drug interactions of clinical importance have been identified. Finasteride is metabolized primarily via, but does not affect the cytochrome P450-linked drug metabolizing enzyme system. Although the risk for finasteride to affect the pharmacokinetics of other drugs is estimated to be small, it is probable that the inhibitors and inducers of cytochrome P450 3A4 will affect

the plasma concentration of finasteride. However, based on established safety margins, any increase due to concomitant use of such inhibitors is unlikely to be of clinical significance.

Compounds which have been tested in man have included antipyrine, digoxin, glibenclamide, propranolol, theophylline and warfarin and no interactions were found.

Due to lacking data for the concomitant use of finasteride and topical minoxidil in male pattern hair loss the combination is not recommended.

Interaction studies have only been performed in adults.

Finasteride 1 mg has no or negligible influence on the ability to drive or use machines.

 

What if I need further help?

If you need further help, please click here to visit our contact us page. It has a contact form for you to send us a message immediately. You can also find our email addresses and telephone number on it too.

 

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Assured Pharmacy is not liable for the currency or accuracy of the information contained in this blog post. For specific information about your personal medical condition, please contact our doctors or pharmacists for advice on [email protected]