I’m a male, age 27. When I began seeing a dermatologist 4-5 yrs ago, he prescribed finasteride 5 mg and had me cut it into quarters.
That went on for about a year or so, but then he said that there was some sort of regulation restricting physicians from doing this. Since then, I’ve been paying the higher cost of the daily 1 mg tablets. Was the doc telling the truth? I understand that the clinical indication calls for a 1 mg tablet, but are doctors really not allowed to prescribe the higher dosage with the understanding that the patient will do his part and cut the pill into the appropriate size?
Many doctors prescribe medicines for off label use. Proscar (finasteride 5mg) is a medication marketed for benign prostatic hypertrophy. Propecia (finasteride 1mg) is a medication marketed for androgenic hair loss (male pattern hair loss). They are the exact same drug with different strength dosing. That being said, if someone (or a computer, such as your insurance company) sees that you have been prescribed Proscar, they may think you have a prostate problem even if you were prescribed it for the intention of using it for hair loss. This is a story that is told by my Propecia drug representative – so there is obviously a bias there and I am not sure how true this story is — but it is plausible.
I give a choice to all my patients and do not favor one or the other, because they are the same medication in different dosages.