Concerns About Shedding From Propecia – What Are The Chances It Will Occur?
October 7, 2008 by Spencer Kobren
I have spent countless hours researching hair loss including getting bombarded by television, radio, internet, etc etc. It’s nice to be able to read a website (The Bald Truth & IAHRS) and listen to someone with obvious knowledge in the field. I know you always write a disclaimer in your emails that you’re not a doctor but I’m willing to bet you know more about the subject of hair loss, physically and emotionally than 99% of the doctors out there.
I have 2 questions and I appreciate any time you put into responding. I am 32 years old and first noticed I started thinning when I was about 25. I haven’t done a thing for it but to be honest it’s been really gradual. I’m currently about a stage 3 on the scale (I forget the name) so it’s definitely time to either “shave it or save it”.
I am going to start using Propecia, hopefully I didn’t wait too long to get that working. I’m just wondering about the ‘shedding’ phase. It doesn’t mention it on the Propecia website and I haven’t been able to find much credible information on this. I’m just wondering what the chances are of this occurring, and if it does happen how much shedding given the worst case scenario?
I am also going to start using the Laser Hairbrush so I guess I won’t be able to say which works better or at all on their own, but I hope that the duo does something for me.
Can you offer any advice on if this and if you think it is a good plan, and also about the shedding process likelihood and severity?
I appreciate your response and I’m glad I found your show to listen to as well.
As always, I have to state clearly that I am not a physician and that my opinions and knowledge concerning hair loss and its treatment are based on extensive research and reporting on the subject as a consumer advocate and hair loss educator.
In my opinion early intervention with FDA approved medical treatment is the key to success when it comes to effectively treating your hair loss.
From what you wrote, it doesn’t sound like you’ve progressed dramatically, so I think you have a good chance of having success with Propecia.
As far as the dreaded “Propecia shed,” the truth is there really is no clinical data that I am aware of that acknowledges this as a common phenomenon, but I do believe that there is enough anecdotal data available which indicates that it can happen.
From what I know, if you do experience a shed, it is almost always temporary. In my opinion, if you really want to effectively attempt to treat your hair loss, finasteride should always be your first line of attack.
In reality you have two choices, take a 5a-Reductase Inhibitor and potentially stop your hair loss and regrow some hair, or not to take one and lose your hair.
I’m not a big fan of the “kitchen sink” approach for treating hair loss. To me, logic dictates that it would be very difficult to accurately gauge the efficacy of any treatment if you are using more than one at a time.
My advise is to talk to your doctor about your treatment plans and to give Propecia a try on its own for several months before adding anything else to your regimen.
I wish that I could say that I was a big believer in LLLT (Low Level Laser Light Therapy) for the treatment of hair loss, but at this point I cannot.
Check out the featured segment section to listen to IAHRS accepted members Dr. Alan Bauman and Dr. Alan Feller discuss the issue. There’s also a segment with David Michaels, the CEO of Lexington International which is the manufacturer of The HairMAX Laser Comb….It’s pretty compelling stuff!
Hope this helps!
Host of The Bald Truth Radio Show
Founder, American Hair Loss Association
Founder and Director of Consumer/Patient Affairs, International Alliance of Hair Restoration Surgeons (IAHRS.ORG)