With all the talk these days about Propecia I figured that this little pill needed a closer look. It is the only FDA approved drug for the treatment of male pattern baldness and it is being touted by many as the only thing that actually does something to stop the nightmare of a receding hairline. Many men have been quick to accept these claims and they take this pill every day but do they really know what they are taking?
First of all, the name of the actual ingredient in Propecia that should get all the credit for fighting the battle at the front lines of the war on receding hairlines is called finasteride. Some chemists working for the drug company Pfizer invented it in a laboratory and it does some pretty amazing things. It is a 4-azasteroid compound that is a specific inhibitor of the Type II 5 alpha-reductase. In plain English, it basically prevents androgen testosterone from being converted into 5-dihydrotestosterone, or DHT. This preventative process stops your hair follicles from dying, which allows more hair to grow on your head.
The enemy, known as DHT is an enzyme that is found primarily in the prostate, seminal vesicles, epididymides, hair follicles and liver. These particular parts of the body account for approximately 67 percent of the DHT that circulates in the bodies of men. The war on baldness is going on at an intracellular level and finasteride is your army that is fighting gallantly for you against an evil enzyme.
Here are some particulars of the actual ingredient finasteride. It is a white crystalline powder with a melting point of 250 degrees Celsius. If you put finasteride in lower alcohol solvents it will freely dissolve, but it is almost insoluble when placed in water. Most Propecia pills available contain 5 mg of finasteride. They are film-coated tablets that also contain the inactive ingredients hydrous lactose, microcrystalline cellulose, pregelatinized starch, sodium starch glycolate, hydroxypropylmethyl cellulose LF, hydroxypropylmethyl cellulose, titanium dioxide, magnesium stearate, talc, docusate sodium, FD&C Blue 2 aluminum lake and yellow iron oxide. These inactive ingredients are mostly just the bonding and filling agents that it takes to make a little pill of Propecia that men can take every day.
There are some warnings when it comes to who can and cannot take Propecia. Women should not take it, nor should anyone who has liver problems. This is due to the fact that this drug works on the enzyme DHT which is primarily produced in the liver.
In most studies that have been performed on men between the ages of 18-54 who used Propecia on a daily basis for several months 65 percent showed an increase in hair growth over areas of the front and top of the scalp. Once the active ingredient finasteride interacts with the hair follicles in bald areas of the scalp, the follicles seem to come back to life. Hair begins to grow again, and so does your self esteem. So it would seem that Propecia is the best product available for men to use in the treatment of male pattern baldness, otherwise known as alopecia. The side effects are minimal and the process is as easy as taking a pill. The results have been very positive in the hair growth department.
In the war against a receding hairline it is good to know that a little white crystalline powder know as finasteride is fighting the battle for you at the intracellular level against a very destructive force known as 5-dihydrotestosterone, or DHT. In plain English, if you cannot afford a hair transplant and you want to know what the next best choice would be to have a better head of hair, Propecia seems to be the answer.
Michael P. Connelly is an Author, Artist and award-winning Filmmaker who writes on a variety of topics that effect people in their every day lives.
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