Dutasteride vs Finasteride – For Hair Loss

We’ve treated 10,000’s of men over the last decade with dutasteride (off-license) and finasteride. Each individual experiences different but effective results. In this blog, we break down the main differences between the two. If you’re looking to get started with either of these medicines, click the button below.

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What is Dutasteride?

Dutasteride, sold under the brand name Avodart among others, is a medication primarily used to treat the symptoms of an enlarged prostate. The condition, known as benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), can cause problems with urination such as difficulty starting and frequent urination, especially at night.

Dutasteride works by blocking the conversion of the hormone testosterone to dihydrotestosterone (DHT) in the body. DHT is involved in the development and enlargement of the prostate. By reducing the amount of DHT, dutasteride helps to shrink the prostate and relieve the symptoms of BPH.

This drug can only be prescribed for hair loss off-license. What this means is the clinicians are not licensed to prescribe this to patients in the UK for hair loss. It can only be prescribed to men for BPH. However, if it can be prescribed on a private prescription for hair loss.

Avodart - Dutasteride - 0.5mg capsules

What is Finasteride?

Finasteride is a medication primarily used for the treatment of an enlarged prostate or benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). The drug can also be used to treat male pattern hair loss (androgenetic alopecia). It is sold under the brand names Propecia among others.

It works in a very similar way to dutasteride. By reducing the levels of DHT, finasteride helps to decrease the size of the prostate, reduce the symptoms of BPH, and slow hair loss in men with androgenetic alopecia.

Despite common misconceptions, it seems that neither finasteride nor dutasteride significantly impact your testosterone levels, indicating that they don’t lead to a condition of low testosterone. Rather, their function is to inhibit the transformation of testosterone into dihydrotestosterone.

While the mechanisms of action for finasteride and dutasteride are identical, they do differ in terms of efficacy, potential side effects, and legal accessibility.


Finasteride came first for male pattern baldness

Developed in the 1970s and patented in the 1980s, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved finasteride in the 1990s for treating benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), an enlarged prostate gland, under the brand name Proscar®. Interestingly, finasteride, now known for treating male pattern baldness, was initially approved for BPH due to the condition’s linkage to dihydrotestosterone (DHT) effects.

The FDA approved finasteride for treating male pattern baldness under the brand name Propecia® in 1997. When prescribed for hair loss, the dosage of finasteride is lower (1mg per day) compared to the 5mg daily dosage used for BPH.

Conversely, dutasteride was patented later in 1996 and got its FDA approval in 2001 as a treatment for BPH, marketed under the brand name Avodart®.

Dutasteride vs Finasteride – Their effectiveness

Dutasteride potentially offers a slightly better treatment than finasteride due to its superior ability to prevent testosterone from converting into DHT, the hormone responsible for male pattern baldness.

A 2004 study in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism revealed that dutasteride blocked a significantly higher amount of DHT compared to finasteride. Out of 399 patients tested, a daily dose of 5mg dutasteride reduced DHT levels by approximately 98.4%, whereas the same dose of finasteride only reduced DHT levels by around 70.8%. That’s a significant differnece.

There are other studies that have shown how dutasteride might be a more effective treatment than finasteride. Take a look at this very popular thread on Reddit:

Dutasteride vs. Finasteride Study [MUST SEE]
by in tressless

Dutasteride vs Finasteride – The Conclusion

Dutasteride and finasteride are akin in their function. They both inhibit the enzyme 5-alpha reductase, thereby preventing your body from converting testosterone into DHT, the hormone responsible for male pattern baldness.

These medications can slow down, halt, or even reverse hair loss by reducing DHT levels, assisting in maintaining thick and healthy hair as you grow older.

Currently, only finasteride is FDA-approved for treating hair loss, making it the go-to option if you’re in search of a readily available, effective medication to inhibit hair loss progression. You can access finasteride online through us, subject to a consultation with our highly experienced licenced provider who will assess whether a prescription is suitable.

Unlike other online suppliers out there, we are one of the very few in the UK who can also prescribe dutasteride, or Avodart. This is a highly popular medicine for hair loss and we are able to supply off-license. The medicine is perfectly safe, and we’ll ensure that it is suitable for you following a consultation. You can start the consultation here.

To supplement your hair retention and regroeth journey, we also sell Regaine, which works powerfully with the treatment above.

As always, we’re here to support you in the best way we can. Be sure to reach out to us if you have any questions or queries.

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This blog post was written on behalf of PharmacyDirectGB by Pharmacy Mentor.  The content of this article is intended solely for informational purposes and should not be interpreted as medical advice. The information provided here is not meant to replace or serve as professional medical guidance. It’s important to consult with your physician to understand the risks and rewards of any treatment before proceeding.