female alopecia
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  1. #1

    Propecia and what it did for me.

    Hi all!

    I know, long time, no words.......

    just wanted to give an update because I know I'm one of the few that uses Propecia. I started on it a year ago, in August. Although I saw no benefit, I continued using it because the hair specialist/derm I saw said that it could take year to truly see the difference. So, I popped the little pill every day, assuming it was "working". Last month, actually exactly 30 days ago, I made the decision to stop taking it, thinking it was close enough to a year to see the benefit. I wasn't seeing anything. So, I stopped. Well, just like Rogaine....you don't realize the good it's doing until.you.stop. Holy cow. What they say? For me? was true. The hair you grew while on the drug will fall out when you stop. It did. It has. OMG.
    I still wear my Flora pieces most of the time. But, I WAS getting by with bio hair from time to time. My shed was down to less than 50 a day and actually, my hairdresser commented that yes, my hair was no where near what it was two years ago, it WAS coming back little by little. The texture is what bothered me the most. No more silky straight hair. I now have wirey, frizzy and curly hair. But I wasn't loosing anywhere near what I had been before starting the drugs. I think I thought...eh....give it up.....still have to "wear hair"....why not just stop trying to fix it.
    Well, bring on the post Propecia shed. wow....it's pretty horrible.
    so..... I'm going back on it. I don't know if there are side effects. I haven't felt any. It may be doing all sorts of things to my insides, but as of today, I am not aware of any. My endo sees me every three months and says I'm doing fine. so...... back to the ol' pill a day. I now SEE the benefits. "you never know what you have until it's gone".....

    so....Propecia and Rogaine DO work....for me, at least. They get my approval, for now.

    Hope all is well with the "old gang"!!!


  2. #2

    Re: Propecia and what it did for me.

    I'm so sorry you're going through a shed, I really feel for you. But don't blame yourself, I think we are many to do this mistake, one day or another, because it's so hard to see what actually works, so hard to say "yes my hair is better than what it would have been without taking the drug." So we give up, and then we realize it was not the thing to do !
    Anyway, I hope that going back on propecia will help you again.
    Oh, and i have a question : you say you didn't loose more than 50 hairs a day with propecia. Did your shed slow down thanks to the drug, or not ? Did you loose the same amount of hairs before and after having started it ? What made you think that it was not doing anything for you ?
    I wish you luck and courage.
    And thank you for having shared your experience, it is helpful.

  3. #3

    Re: Propecia and what it did for me.

    well, for those that don't know me....(I stopped posting months ago)....two years ago, almost exactly....I'd just come off of a long bout of a very stressful situation. (the kind of thing medical professionals would tell me if I didn't get away from, my health was going to decline). Anywa, once I got away from the stress and went to a place that I thought was going to provide peace and calm.....my hair started fall out by the handfuls. I came to learn that I was having a pretty bad TE. Luckily, I was blessed with a TON of healthy hair and I was the only one that truly knew the nightmare that came out of my head every day. That TE went on for almost three months before I was able to get to a doctor. At the point I finally DID see a doctor, I had a very sever panic attack which lead me to the ER one night. When my very rudimentary blood tests didn't reveal anything drastic, I thought I must certainly must be losing my mind. But, after months of non stop tests...including a scalp biopsy, it was determined by more than one professional that I was extremely deficient in many vitamins, had very low iron and ferritin, had some adrenal stress and finally....have Hashimoto's thyroid disease. All of that explained my panic attacks, my insomnia, weight gain.....blah blah blah. The scalp biopsy showed AGA, uncovered by a stress related TE. Mix in menopause and I was basically hair "screwed".
    For the next few months I did everything I read or heard to do to get healthy, including taking synthroid, supplements and doing all I could to avoid stress. Funny thing about stress.....it doesn't stop just because you want it to. The stress that caused the initial TE did go away, but then my husband had a heart attack, my best friend passed away, my husband then needed heart surgery, I had a bout of skin cancer that got horribly infected, needing tons of hair loss causing antibiotics and the whole mess started up again..... MANY hair loss professionals told me to get healthy but to take the Propecia and use Rogaine because it is the ONLY THING PROVEN to reduce hair loss. So, I did. And, it does keep hair loss down to a minimum and it does make bio hair grow very fast. I just HATED the texture. So gross, this manufactured hair. But, gross manufactured hair IS STILL hair. So, at this point, I will take what I can get.
    I never thought it wasn't doing anything. I thought it wasn't doing enough. My expectations were way too high. Truth is, I wanted my old Hollywood, gorgeous hair back and just wasn't happy with what I was getting. Now, I understand. You get what you get. And, I'll take what's offered.
    Oh...and one more thing....as the old timers here can tell you. I came to terms with the hair loss thing pretty quickly. It helps that I now own three Flora falls and don't mind one bit clipping them on everyday. It no longer gets me down. Of course I miss my hair, but I don't get depressed about it. I am VERY open about it..tell everyone that my hair is supplemented...wear hats to the gym. Basically, life just goes on. NO reason to feel bad for me......it's just hair. All is good.

  4. #4
    Experienced Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2012

    Re: Propecia and what it did for me.

    Any time you start or discontinue a systemic drug it has the potential to make you shed temporarily, specially something like Propecia. I was on Rogaine for nearly 10 years and when I stopped using it, I did shed for a few months afterwards. However, 1 year later my hair looked better than while on Rogaine. I understand your decision to go back on it though, I would probably do the same.

  5. #5
    Strand of hope

    Re: Propecia and what it did for me.

    Rugbug - I think that I read you were taking 1mg finasteride (Propecia). Depending on your age, it could be that a higher dose would help more. My endo prescribes finasteride 5mg and I take 1/2 of a tablet every day, or 2.5mg. I am 45 but have had a hysterectomy so I also take estrogen. Doc says older women need more than 1mg. I agree - 1 mg wasn't helping me very much but 2.5 mg seems to be alot better. Not much shed at all and baby hairs everywhere. I used Rogaine for a while and it helped alot too but it took it's toll on my face so I had to stop. I also wear a Flora fall - freaking love this thing - and will probably continue to wear it even if all my bio hair comes back. No roots showing when the topper is on - love that!! Anyway, I love your attitude and you have been an inspiration to many on this board. If the 1 mg wasn't giving you any side effects, the 2.5 mg most likely won't either. Might be worth a try. Good luck and thanks for keeping in touch.

    Take care,


  6. #6
    Experienced Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2010

    Re: Propecia and what it did for me.

    Rugbug - nice to hear from you again. I've considered stopping Rogaine as well. I guess we all assume if we don't get our 'old' hair back its not working. But I guess thats not the case.

    Before I started I told myself as long as my hair didn't get worse I would continue. It's not worse so I'm going to continue

    At least now you know it was working. Maybe 'Strand' is right in suggesting upping the dosage may improve your regrowth.

  7. #7
    Experienced Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2011

    Re: Propecia and what it did for me.

    Do you think maybe you should have gradually went off it?

  8. #8

    Re: Propecia and what it did for me.

    Hi Rugbug
    Sorry about your friend and I hope your husband is recovering well.

  9. #9

    Re: Propecia and what it did for me.

    Hi! Another update....but first I'd like to mention that I did go off gradually....and the shed didn't start massively...it worked it's way up. I went ahead and refilled my old Rx, having thought I decided to go back on it....but I don't know...I just can't bring myself to take it again. It's almost like...I have come to complete resolve that I will lose my hair and what's the point of trying to save it when truth be told, I am perfectly fine wearing my falls. I stared down the bottle of pills and stared down my Flora collection and....made my choice. I guess what I'm trying to say...out loud for all of the newbies out there.....losing hair does take some getting used to, especially if you had great hair for 40 some years. But, given time to accept it....it's just not that big of a deal and I feel, internally, a whole lot better not taking a pill. And... I'm going to come back and be a regular here....I feel I can be of help to people in here with regard to what works and what doesnt. Plus, omg, I missed you all!

  10. #10
    Experienced Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2011

    Re: Propecia and what it did for me.

    Rug Bug, you and I seem to have the same doctor. We have followed the same protocol. Shots, Olux, and now propecia.
    I started 2 months ago & I'm just not sure about this, I don't see
    any improvement, in fact I think it looks worse, now I don't know
    if I should continue taking it, is $35.00 month, if its not going to
    help or if I haven't given it enough time yet. But I don't want
    to take it forever either. ??? I don't know what to do. I go back
    to my derm next month & I guess we'll have a talk. Sometimes I
    wonder if its better to just do nothing & see what happens

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