QUESTION: I am thinking about starting finasteride (Propecia) for my hair loss. Are there safer substitutes?
The only two FDA approved treatments for genetic hair loss (male balding) are minoxidil (Rogaine) and finasteride (Propecia).
They work very differently and it's important to understand that minoxidil is not a substitute for finasteride. It is a different treatment with a completely different mechanism of working.
Other so called 'off label' treatments that are commonly used for male pattern balding are low level laser therapy (LLLT) and platelet rich plasma.
Jeff Donovan MD PhD FRCPC FAAD
US & Canadian board-certified Dermatologist