Hi, thanks for this service. While I am somewhat suspicious of your constant hawking of propecia to the exclusion of topical solutions (pun intended) such as minoxidil in your earlier entries, I would still love any insights you have on that topic. I am a 25 year old man. At age 18 or 19 my internist noted some frontal hair thinning/loss, evident to me retrospectively when I examined pictures (esp. if flash was used). I was immediately placed on minoxidil, which seems to have not only arrested the loss but perhaps, over the last 6 or 7 years, even allowed some regrowth toward the front. Finally, now, at age 25, I am noticing some thinning and folicle miniaturization in the center and back of my head for the first time, though I am still at the point that only other balding men notice—my female friends and loved ones think I’m neurotic and that even my minoxidil use is unnecessary. What I wonder is whether I should expect acceleration of the loss or merely loss at the same rate; if the loss rate itself is constant then I think I’ll try to hold on by using topical minoxidil.
Second, if I were to switch to a dht blocker, would you recommend avodart or propecia, and would you recommend cessation of minoxidil? I worry that after 6+ years my hair could do unpredictable things without the minoxidil. Lastly, I don’t think I yet qualify on any of those charts as balding, though I myself notice some thinning and, of course, many hairs in my hands when using hair products.
A DHT blocker impacts the cause of male patterned hair loss, so it is the best approach to use a drug that is known to be effective and safe. Avodart is not proven to be effective or safe (no scientific study for hair loss victims) for treating hair loss, but I believe that it is effective. Notice I did not say I believed it to be safe, because long term use of this drug has been on older men with prostate problems, not young men with hair loss problems. Is there a long term Vioxx type problem hiding in the closet? I don’t know, nor does anyone really know.
I tell everyone who is on minoxidil that when it is working to stay on the topical medication, for stopping it often causes ‘catch up hair loss’. Frontal hair loss and early crown hair loss indicate you may be a Norwood Class 3V pattern. You need to have your hair and scalp mapped out for miniaturization to make the diagnosis, otherwise you are flying blind.
I have no connection to Merck (producers of Propecia) and I am not ever paid by them for my opinions on this drug. I do not now, nor have I ever owned stock of this company (as I’ve stated before), so I am clean in expressing my opinions on this drug, because it has had wonderful results that I have seen in many of my patients.