Avodart side effects and benefit for hair loss, enlarged prostate gland - dutasteride medication generic name
June 2 2016 by
Ray Sahelian, M.D.

Clinical trials, sponsored primarily by the manufacturer, have shown Avodart to be an effective treatment for prostate enlargement and similar to finasteride Proscar. Further studies are needed to gain a clearer understanding of any clinically significant differences between Avodart and Propecia.

Natural alternatives to prostate drugs or hair growth drugs
I am not aware of studies comparing it to saw palmetto or other herbs for the treatment of prostate enlargement or for the treatment of hair growth. However, my best understanding is that it is significantly more effective for the treatment of hair loss than any natural supplement that I am aware of. For information on natural supplements and hair loss.

Q. Is saw palmetto a good natural alternative to Avodart for hair loss? What about prostate enlargement?
     A. I have not seen any studies comparing saw palmetto to Avodart, so it is difficult to say. A comprehensive prostate formula with several herbs, such as Prostate Power Rx, may be a good initial option in mild to moderate cases of BPH. I don't believe saw palmetto by itself is effective for hair loss.

Q. Is it okay to take Avodart one day and Prostate Power Rx the next? I get Avodart side effects when I use it daily but it does help my prostate symptoms.
   A. Herbs are not as potent as drugs. One option, if your doctor agrees, is to alternate every other day taking Avodart one day and prostate power the next, or something similar to this. This way you get herbs that support your prostate while the Avodart helps the symptoms, but have less side effects since a lower amount is being used.

Avodart for prostate enlargement treatment
According to the manufacturer, this medication is indicated for those with enlarging prostate, sometimes called benign prostatic hyperplasia, or BPH for short. Avodart may shrink the prostate, improve BPH symptoms, and perhaps lower the chance for problems like surgery on the prostate.

Avodart or Proscar? Which is better?
Avodart is a dual 5alpha-reductase inhibitor for the treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia. It differs from finasteride as it inhibits both isoenzymes of 5alpha-reductase and results in near-complete suppression of serum dihydro-testosterone. Similar to finasteride, Avodart reduces serum prostatic specific antigen by approximately 50% at 6 months and total prostate volume by 25% in 2 years. Randomised, placebo-controlled trials conducted over 2 years have shown the efficacy of Avodart in symptomatic relief, and peak urinary flow rate, and reduction of acute urinary retention events and the need for surgery. The main Avodart side effects are erectile dysfunction, decreased libido, gynacomastia and ejaculation disorders. Avodart has been shown to possess tumor regression properties in vitro and its role in chemoprevention of prostate cancer is being evaluated in the ongoing Reduction by Dutasteride of Prostate Cancer Events (REDUCE) trial.

Avodart side effects, safety, risks, danger
Possible side effects with Avodart are impotence (trouble getting or keeping an erection), a decrease in libido (sex drive), swelling or tenderness of the breast, and a decrease in the amount of semen released during sex. Avodart side effects could also include allergic reactions such as rash, itching, hives, and swelling of the lips or face. Another potential adverse reaction is muscle aches. We have had 2 emails of this potential Avodart side effect and we can't be sure the drug is responsible until we receive more information.
   Lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) and male sexual dysfunction are highly prevalent in aging men, and are strongly linked. Various treatment strategies for benign prostatic hyperplasia may affect sexuality, with differences between drug classes and between drugs within a same class. The 5alpha-reductase inhibitors, finasteride and Avodart are associated with a greater side effect risk of erectile dysfunction, ejaculatory dysfunction (EjD) and decreased libido than is placebo.

I read the article that you wrote regarding Avodart or the generic dutasteride and it’s possible side effects. I have been taking Avodart for 8 years and dutasteride for the past 6 months due to my insurance company not wanting to pay for the Avodart. A few months after I started the Avodart I developed an unexplained minor skin rash that was isolated to my lower legs and sometimes on my hands and would appear every 6 months or so. This rash was just red bumps with no discharge and very little itching. Just prior to the rash developing I would get a burning sensation in the area where the red bump(s) would appear about an hour later. No over the counter cream would diminish the bumps. My Dermatologist prescribed Betametasone Dipropionate Cream, 0.05% (Augmented) for the rash and it would clear up the rash within 2 days or less. Right after I started taking dutasteride I had a major rash outbreak on my upper chest, back, behind the eras, arms, legs, but not the face. My lips seem to be a bit swelled and tender at this time as well. I went to an Urgent Care facility and was given a steroid shot and 5 days’ supply of Prednisolone for the rash. It cleared up entirely within two days but came back mildly two days after I finished the Prednisolone tablets. My family doctor is stumped as to what has caused this sudden outbreak of shin rash.

Using natural supplements to reverse the sexual dysfunction
The Avodart side effect regarding sexual health is a concern for many men who are medicated with this drug. Passion Rx, Prostate Power Rx, or natural sex herbs could potentially be helpful in some men in reversing some of these Avodart related sexual side effects. Discuss with your doctor if these natural supplements are suited for you. We have not had any reports of untoward reactions with the combination of Avodart and Passion Rx but the final decision of taking the combination rests with you and your doctor.

Q.  have been taking Avodart for about a year with typical side effects. I have read nothing about how long one can expect to take Avodart medication. Is it a life long thing or can one expect to discontinue its use at some point?
   A. It depends why it is being prescribed. The idea is to use the least dosage that works. One has to benefit the benefit of the medication versus potential Avodart side effects.
      Q.  The prescription for Avodart is for enlarged prostate. My side effects are impotence and night time urination. At least the pain is gone. I just did not want to go on year after year if at some point I should be "cured."
         A. Your physician should periodically assess your prostate size. It is possible that the dosage or frequency of use may be reduced depending on your symptoms.

Risk for heart failure
A study involved 6,700 men with high scores from PSA blood tests but no sign of cancer on biopsy. The men were given Avodart or dummy pills and new biopsies four years later. Prostate cancer was found in 25 percent of those on dummy pills and 20 percent of those on Avodart. Heart failure developed in 30 men on the drug versus only 16 on dummy pills. Further analysis suggests that men who developed heart failure while on Avodart also tended to be taking certain other drugs. The New England of Medicine, 2010.

Muscle aches, testimonial
I am a 58 year old white male, diagnosed with a non-cancerous, enlarged prostate, by my family doctor in 2004. I am 6’ 1” and 185 lbs - active 5 days a week and have run 6 marathons in the past three years. I run outdoors or go to the gym to row, cycle and weight train. Occasionally I have lower back pain but otherwise have few medical issues other than an ongoing PSA on the high side of normal. In 2004, I was prescribed and used Terazosin to reduce night time urination frequency until 2009 at which time I switched to Flomax to try and reduce the symptoms which had increased. After 6 months with no improvement, my doctor recommended me to a specialist, who in June of this year, performed a series of tests and suggested we try to reduce the size of my prostrate with the use of Avodart. He also changed my Flomax prescription to Alfuzosin HCL 10mg.Everything was going fine with my prescription (few side effects) and my 16 week marathon training for an October event until I spent several days rolling paint on ceilings in late August and early September. I developed shoulder, neck and upper arm pain which I attributed to overuse. It was even painful to try and take a full breath of air as my rib area felt tight and sore as my lungs expanded. Problem is – this is still the case today - 2 + months later.In addition to this, while my training for the marathon went extremely well early, I started to have difficulty with achieving time goals on long runs, late in the training. I was somewhat dismayed but I attributed the soreness to fatigue late in the training schedule– and believed my pre-race taper would rectify this. I did not over train – or push the training goals. When I ran my marathon in mid October 2010 (a month ago) I was unable to keep my planned race pace going past 18 miles – and attributed it to the downhill portions of the race course (I am from the prairies). Problem is, I have more pain now than I did the week after the race. I just can’t seem to heal and it’s getting very depressing as I haven’t been able to walk, turn my head, reach or lift without pain. In all the marathons and half marathons I have run. I have never been sore for longer than a few days after the event – certainly nothing close to what I am experiencing now. I suspect that the Avodart or the Alfuzosin or the combination, may have something to do with my inability to heal like I could last spring and the ongoing neck, shoulder, arm and hip and leg joint pain.

I have developed pain in my leg and knees. I have been on Avodart for six months.

I have been using Avodart for about 4 years. I have pain from ankles all the way up legs, thighs, back of calves etc. Nightime brings the severest pains, almost unbearable at times. I am 73 years old and walk and exerciseregularly. Am considered to be in very great shape by other younger people. The prospect of using this drug for life does not excite me much.

Avodart and hair loss, regrowth, restoration
Avodart does work for hair loss. Dihydrotestosterone is the main molecule responsible for androgenic alopecia or hair loss. Finasteride, which reduces transformation of testosterone into dihydrotestosterone (DHT) and decreases dihydrotestosterone activity, is approved for treatment of androgenic hair loss in men. In one case study, a 46-year-old woman with androgenic alopecia, non-responsive to minoxidil, who initially benefited from finasteride, was given another 5-reductase inhibitor, Avodart. Clinical evaluation and trichogram were applied for assessment of Avodart efficacy in this patient. Additionally, mean hair diameter was monitored by means of computer dermoscopy. After 6 months of therapy, significant improvement was observed and after 9 months the clinical diagnosis of androgenic alopecia could no longer be made in this patient. Avodard is helpful for hair loss. Avodart dosage for hair loss may be less that the dosage required to treat prostate enlargement. For more information on baldness.

J Am Acad Dermatol. 2014. A randomized, active- and placebo-controlled study of the efficacy and safety of different doses of dutasteride versus placebo and finasteride in the treatment of male subjects with androgenetic alopecia. Dihydrotestosterone is the main androgen causative of androgenetic alopecia, a psychologically and physically harmful condition warranting medical treatment.OBJECTIVE:We sought to compare the efficacy and safety of dutasteride (type 1 and 2 5-alpha reductase inhibitor) with finasteride (type 2 5-alpha reductase inhibitor) and placebo in men with androgenetic alopecia. Dutasteride increased hair growth and restoration in men with androgenetic alopecia

5 Alpha Reductase
Both finasteride and Avodart are slow, time-dependent inhibitors of steroid 5 alpha-reductase type II. Overall, the latter is a more efficient steroid 5 alpha-reductase inhibitor than finasteride.

Prostate Medicine - Drugs
Several drugs are currently used as prostate medicine, the most commonly used is Proscar (finasteride) for prostate enlargement. Avodart - Dutasteride manufactured by GlaxoSmithKline; Dutas - Generic Dutasteride manufactured by Dr. Reddy's; Fincar - Generic Proscar manufactured by Cipla; Flomax - Tamsulosin Hydrochloride manufactured by Boehringer Ingelheim; Proscar - Finasteride (5mg) manufactured by Merck; Calutide - Generic Casodex manufactured by Cipla; Cytomid - Generic Flutamide manufactured by Cipla.

Research study
Clinical Usefulness of Serum Prostate Specific Antigen for the Detection of Prostate Cancer is Preserved in Men Receiving the Dual 5alpha-Reductase Inhibitor Avodart.
J Urology. 2006.
A total of 2,802 men 50 years or older with a clinical diagnosis of benign prostatic hyperplasia, no history of prostate cancer, PSA 1.5 to 10 ng/ml, prostate volume 30 cc or greater, an American Urological Association symptom score of 12 or greater and peak urinary flow rate 15 ml per second or less were randomized to 0.5 mg Avodart dutasteride daily or matching placebo for 24 months.  A doubling factor is effective for maintaining the sensitivity and specificity of PSA for prostate cancer detection in men on Avodart. Increases in serum PSA in men receiving it should be considered suspicious and serial PSA measurements should be used to evaluate changes from nadir.

Testimonials received
I have been taking Avodart for 5 years but not every day. I take it two times a week I went from PSA of 7 to 3. No sexual dysfunction yet.


Q. Where can I buy Avodart ?
     A. You can buy Avodart at a pharmacy with a doctor's prescription. This medication is not sold over the counter.

Q. I sent you, under separate email, a “Live Science” article regarding a study that indicates that men with low testosterone die sooner. I am an “over 50” male with an enlarged prostate and relatively high PSA reading which has proven to be non-cancerous. I am taking Avodart which has apparently shrunk my prostate to a reasonable size and the symptoms of frequent urination and difficulty in starting urination have gone away. The side effects seem to be a decreased semen production, but my sex drive is still there (not like when I was 25 though). If the article regarding low testosterone is correct, and if my assumption about Avodart is correct, that it lowers testosterone levels, could Avodart possibly shorten my life span? I wrote to Avodart and they told me to consult with my doctor. I then sent them another email saying that I wanted to take the question off of the personal level and ask it as a general question about the product line and, so far, no answer.
     A. As far as we know, Avodart blocks the conversion of testosterone to DHT, rather than decreasing testosterone levels. The long term health consequences of regular use, and reduction of DHT levels, are not known. Just to be on the safe side, it is best to use Avodart in as low a dosage as possible and perhaps taking occasional breaks from use. This has to be done in agreement with your prescribing doctor.

Q. I read with interest your articles on the potential side effects of Avodart and found it disturbing that some of the Avodart side effects such as musculoskeletal pain were not mentioned on the official Avodart (GlaxoSmithKline) website. On another web site, almost 10% of posters related anecdotes about experiencing unusual pain after taking Avodart. My father is an otherwise healthy 84 y/o Caucasian male. He began taking Avodart for BPH approximately 18 months ago. About 4 months ago he began complaining of joint pain and stiffness, especially in his shoulders and knees, which was more severe at night and upon awakening. He also developed a shortened gait and had some difficulty in walking normally. He frequently required morning pain relief, which he obtained by taking naproxen or Tylenol, one to two tablets per day. He visited his primary care physician who made an initial diagnosis of arthritis, however, later x-ray imaging of the shoulders showed no significant degeneration or other changes consistent with arthritis, and there is no family hx of arthritis. Approximately one month ago he received cortisone injections in both shoulders, which resulted in some significant pain relief lasting for about 10 days. Additional changes in his body habitus which I observed recently include some possible generalized muscle atrophy and an increased resting heart rate. Just 6 months ago he was much more vigorous and more agile than many 60 year olds. About one week ago (August 06) he consulted with his urologist and was instructed to discontinue taking Avodart for 30 days, although the urologist was unaware that musculoskeletal pain is a potential Avodart side effect. Since that time my father has reported some slight improvement, with reduced joint pain, and he has required less frequent oral pain medication. He takes no other prescription medications except Timoptic (ophthalmic) for glaucoma and is otherwise healthy. He has never had his testosterone levels checked. I am concerned that if his testosterone levels are low and given that conversion to the more androgenic DHT form is blocked by the Avodart, he may be at increased risk for osteoporosis and other side effects of low testosterone levels. Can you provide any recommendations on how to proceed in evaluating and treating him, which he could then discuss with his primary care physician and his urologist? Thank you.
     A. The information you provide about possible Avodart side effects regarding joint pain is interesting and the first we have had reported. We appreciate your email, but we are not in a position to offer individual advice, but his doctor is welcome to read the info on prostate health on our website.

Q. I am a 65 year old male with BPH. My urologist in Winston Salem) recently prescribed 0.5 mg Avodart daily. One hour after injesting it, my lower body begins to experience a strong aching effect that is most noticable in my groin area. This aching increases and eventually extends to the lower limbs and continues for a period of approximately 12 hours, at which time it begins to gradually decrease in intensity. These effects restart again after taking another dose of Avodart. I need to reduce the size of my prostate, but this aching is definitely affecting my body and my general wellness. Can you tell me of another similar drug that is compatible to Avodart or if the drug is avaliable in lower doses.
     A. We have not heard of this potential Avodart side effect before. As far as we know, Avodart is only available in 0.5 mg dosage. Another option is to try Propecia or Proscar since they also are helpful for enlarged prostate. You may also consider Prostate Power Rx which may be helpful by itself, or may reduce the dosage required of finasteride, the active ingredient in Propecia or Proscar. Discuss with your doctor before making any changes.

Q. It was with great interest that I read the questions about muscle / skeletal pain experienced after taking Avodart. My 83 year old father was being treated for recurring urinary tract infections and an enlarged prostate. He had been taking Flomax since June without problem. In latter Sept., his urologist prescribed Avodart in addition to the Flomax. For the past two weeks dad has been experiencing excrutiating pain from the shoulders to his calves- particularly at night. This is a man who rarely uses medication during post-operative periods and he has been beside himself in pain. He has found some relief (but not enough for sleep) from Darvocet. Last week my brother was helping him keep track of his medications, and somehow Avodart was not included. On Sunday and Monday of this week Dad had little to no pain. I realized he had not been taking Avodart and got him back on it yesterday (Tuesday)- and last night the pain was back with a vengeance and it continued today after he again took the Avodart daily dose. I searched the Avodart website and saw no mention of muscle or skeletal pain, and yet when I read one of the comments about the man with the 84 year old father, the experience seemed cloned. It seems to me that there must be a correlation.

Avodart - Dutasteride - is a 5alpha-reductase inhibitor that inhibits both types 1 and 2 isozymes of 5alpha-reductase, the enzyme responsible for converting testosterone to dihydrotestosterone in the prostate and other tissues. Dihydrotestosterone is the primary cause of prostate growth and has been proven to play a key role in the development and progression of benign prostatic hyperplasia. Avodart has been investigated in three multicenter studies involving 4325 men aged 50 years and above with benign prostatic hyperplasia. Data from these two-year, placebo-controlled studies demonstrated that Avodart 0.5 mg once daily reduced the risk of both acute urinary retention and the need for benign prostatic hyperplasia-related surgical intervention, improved benign prostatic hyperplasia-related symptoms, decreased prostate volume and increased maximum urinary flow rates.

Q. I've been prescribed Avodart beginning a month ago and have noticed sudden side effect of difficulty in achieving and retaining erections; not a problem previously for me (age 77) thanks to Viagra, gratefully. If i stop taking Avodart (or take it less frequently) will these side effects disappear, and will testosterone production be restored? I had TURP 15 years ago, last PSA 4.2 ... no difficulty with urination, but retain 2-4oz causing frequency, but not bothersome.
   A. Most side effects from medicines are dose related, therefore theoretically a lower amount or taking Avodart less frequently would cause fewer or less severe Avodart side effects.

Recently my drs. switched me from Flomax to Avodart  I also take prescription Androgel this all seems like a conflict. Flomax i have been on for years i feel no benifit from the Avodart, i am switching to weekly injections of testosterone because my levels are so low.

Q. Gentlemen: I have just completed reading the above posted Avodart information on my computer. Samples of Avodart medicine were given to me by my urologist. After taking Avodart for 4 days I awoke with both knees in pain. I had difficulty straightening them and after a short walk my leg muscles (all) became sore. Two days after stopping Avodart I felt no discomfort. I am an 88 yr. old vigorous man, walk almost every day at a fast pace, before I took Avodart, and also now, having stopped taking this drug. Manufacturer should include this musculoskeletal pain Avodart side effect in their package brochure.

Q.  Thank you for your news reports on various medications as I do find these very useful. I was especially interested in the information you gave on Avodart. I too have suffered extreme joint pain in each shoulder and am now seeing a doctor just to be treated for that condition! I'm told by him and the doctor who prescribed Avodart that it could not have caused my condition and it's because I'm getting older, I'm 65 now. I do know that Avodart caused this trouble and even though I stopped taking it two months ago I am still suffering a great deal without too much relief. I'm told to take Tylenol Arthritis and that's it. Why is this Avodart drug still on the market?
   A. It is possible that some people are benefiting from Avodart and not getting side effects. Or, perhaps taking a third or half a tablet could also work with fewer side effects. Hopefully the negative reaction your experienced will dissipate with time.

Q. I have been on Avodart for about one year to a year and one half. I have seen an improvement in my condition but my doctor says that Avodart has not worked as well as they would have hoped since they say it hasn't shrunk the prostate in the place where it is needed the most. One day I came in for a urine retention test and they said that it had been the worst they have seen. Six months ago I had retained only 159 cc (?) and this time it was 229. I suggested that perhaps something had change since the last time I was there and I mentioned how i was taking more of klonopin and asked if that could affect urine retentions I was told "no". They said that eventually the bladder would give out and not function. I went to the book store and looked up klonopin and found out that it did cause urine retention. I went to another urologist and had the test done in the morning BEFORE I took the klonopin and the retention was 59cc. This urologist said I was above average in urine flow and not to worry if I stay on the Avodart.

Q. I am an emergency physician that has used Proscar to prevent further hair loss for a number of years. I can tell you that around the time I started to use it I developed muscle spasms and pain to my periscapular region, shoulder, neck but never linked the two. I wrote it off as 'ageing'. These symptoms have progressively worsened over a number of years. I then switched over to Avodart last year. On an empty stomach I did get severe cramps with this medication. Since Avodart has a much higher half life than Proscar I recently decreased its use to only once a week. I now have linked my muscle spasm/pain to its use.....after 3-4 days of not taking it I have no pain, within 1 day of taking Avodart I end up needing to obtain the services of a massage therapist. Hope this information helps. To me it seems very likely that a significant Avodart side effect and even Proscar can be serious muscular pain. Because of this I will probably discontinue my hair loss therapy.

Q. Should Avodart be suspended in a patient who is trying to regenerate muscle after a knee operation?
   A. I don't know for sure what kind of effect Avodart would have after knee surgery and muscle tissue damage or repair, but, as a general rule, it is best to reduce the dosage or stop medications that are not necessary a few days or weeks before and after a surgery.

Q. I am a 68 year old retired toxicologist. I read in your report on Avodart side effects that one individual reported increased pain in the groin area. I can report a similar experience. I started taking Avodart six weeks ago and approximately two weeks after starting I developed a pain in the area of the right groin. This has increased over the past four weeks and starts some two to 3 hours after taking Avodart. The pain maximizes at about 6 hours and after 12 hours begins decreasing. I plan on stopping Avodart to see if the groin pain side effect goes away.
   A. Let us know if the groin pain goes away after you stop the med.
      Q. I have been off Avodart for 5 days and the pain in the groin area has decreased dramatically to the point now it is only noticeable when I think about it. I really do think that Avodart was a significant part, if not the only cause of the groin pain.

Q. I have been taking one Avodart capsule and two Flomax capsules altogether, once per day, for over 6 months. I am 58 years old, retired for 4 years, white male, and began taking Flomax the later part of last summer 2007 when I began having more and more trouble urinating. After testing, my doctor started me on Flomax and upon a return visit; I advised I was still having difficulty. He referred me to a urologist who, after testing, diagnosed BPH or me with an enlarged prostate. He prescribed Avodart with the Flomax. After approximately 7 days of taking this medication, I began having muscle and joint pain, and lethargy. However, my problem with urinating was markedly improved. I notified my doctor and he wanted me to continue taking the medication, but said it would be my decision whether to stop or continue. I decided to stop and within approximately 2-3 days, my problem with urination started again, and so I began taking the Avodart with the Flomax again with good results. I also take Lortab (PRN) for two herniated L4 and L5 discs, but I now have to take a Lortab pill when I wake up in the morning to help with the joint and muscle pain, and just walking. Once it takes effect, I am able to get up and go about my normal activities of daily living. However, for the past two weeks I decided to decrease the Flomax by one capsule, since both my doctor and urologist told me to take one Avodart and two Flomax capsules altogether once per day. I decided to see if I could reduce the amount of medication. Since doing this, I have had some trouble with urination again, but am trying to get by on as low dosage as possible. I am only writing because I read on-line of similar problems men have or had experienced when taking this medication and it also has affected my libido and ejaculation, if any, so that is another side effect/problem as well. The only question I have: is there any alternative medications for men with these side effects? I am in otherwise good health and have been working out at the gym almost every day for the past 8-10 years, and have very good muscle tone and strength. I just hate the side effects of this Avodart drug as I know without a doubt the muscle and joint pain and lethargy began after taking the Avodart as I had not had these problems prior; and they have continued as of this writing. However, the Lortab is very effective each morning I wake up.
   A. You may consider reading the page on this website about prostate health.

I am a mom of a 25 yr old male who has seen his hairline change significantly. Propecia didn't work (after 10 months) and his hairline just kept getting worse and worse. As one can imagine, he was in a state of DEPRESSION over this. He felt his life was over. He cried like a baby and I didn't know what to do or how to help him. Finally, I was able to get him Avodart. He's been taking it for a year and his problem has stabilized. He takes one pill a day (0.5 mg) and I am worried this will take a toll on his health. He is a young man and I don't know what I can do or suggest to him.
    I am not sure what the decades-long side effects of Avodart use would be in a person who starts taking it from their 20s.

I am a 65 year old male. I was prescribed Avodart (0.5 mg daily) by my Urologist about 6 months ago. About a month ago I started having unusual joint pain in my shoulders and knees. I googled Avodart side effects and noticed your Q&A on this subject. My Urologist also prescribed Testosterone gel at the same time since my blood level was low and I was experiencing low energy and mood problems. I am stopping the Avodart until the joint pain subsides and will consult with my Urologist. But I am concerned that using the testosterone gel without the Avodart will cause my BPH to worsen. If I also stop the testosterone gel I am also concerned about losing the benefits, which have been substantial. Would cycling these drugs help solve this problem?
    Reducing the frequency of use of any supplement or medication is likely to reduce the side effects.

Avodart 0.5 MG. Started 01/09/2007 for enlarged prostate. I am a 71 year old man. Finasteride - generic Proscar started 09/25/2008. Past month or two, ED - unable to have an erection. Question: Stop finasteride, go back to Avodart? My doctor gave me Cialis. I am afraid to take it, due to the side effects.

Q. I having been taking Avodart medication for nearly 11 months. These side-effects have happened to me: loss of sex desire, no semen is ejaculated. Impotence was already a problem so it was not a new experience for me. However I note I need a larger amount of Edex (Alprostadil for Injection) to maintain an erection. I went from 25cc to 50cc. And though I wish it true, I have not experienced a resurgence of hair growth. Reading all the emails reporting pain was enlightening to me. All the pain I was experiencing during the last year was written off as old age or from another source. I have had excruciating pain in my left shoulder and at times in both shoulders. This pain becomes so intense that I could not stand to have a fan or air conditioning blow on it. I have elbow pain as well as muscular pain between the shoulder and the elbow, I have neck pain, too.. Recently I have been experiencing a small amount of pain in my groin. At a six month check-up my urologist commented that my prostate had shrunk and my PSA dropped. I have noticed an improvement in urine flow and start-up. I no longer feel the immediate urgency to go 3 to 4 times a night. Lately I have only had to get up once during the night. Most nights I do feel a slight urge to go a second time, but for the most part I can suppress it till I get up. The urologist said I should only to be on it one year, which will be at the middle of February 2009. I will be anxious to see if the pain subsides or disappears after I am off Avodart.
   A. Do let us know if the alleged Avodart side effects are reduced or disappear when the medication is stopped.
      Q. I have now been off Avodart for 3 months. The pain in my left arm between the shoulder and elbow is no longer present. This would be the only pain I am experiencing which I would call "phantom pain" with no reason for it.

My Doctor recently prescribed Avodart for me. I have had to urinate frequently and sometimes urgently most of my life. I am 67. I can live with it during daylight hours. During the night I normally am up to urinate 2 to 3 times. I don't have trouble going to sleep and feel that it is an inconvenience not a serious medical problem.
I have not yet filled my prescription, and after doing some research including reading side affects comments from users on Dr. Shaelian's site, I do not think I will be taking any Avodart. Am I making a mistake without actually giving it a try?
    Each person has to decide for themselves and balance the potential benefits versus side effects of using supplements or medications.

I would like to report that taking saw palmetto and/or beta sistosterol along with Advodart is bad. I had lots of leakage, urgency, frequency and stinging taking these together. I STOPPED the herbals and Immediately EVERYTHING IMPROVED DRASTICALLY. Eliminating Advodart and staying on the Herbals helped some also. BUT taking Avodart alone gave me AMAZING RESULTS. For me anyway, Mixing Avodart and Herbals is a bad idea for me. I wish I could warn others about this.

Ia a 64 yr. old male with fibromyalgia. My Dr. just started me on Avodart for an enlarged prostrate. After just a few days of taking 0.5 mg of this med I started to hurt terrible in my shoulder and neck muscles. I have had fibromyalgia for over 8 yrs. and never has my shoulder and neck muscles hurt this bad. I have stopped taking this medication to see if this drug was the culprit.

I have a concern about the quality of the Avodart medication I am taking. It is from Genoloss 0.5mg Genpharma International, manufactured by Briyosis soft caps. I bought it for 229 dollars for 365 capsules. Should I be worried about the quality because of the cheap price.
    I have not studied the quality of Genoloss 0.5mg Genpharma International, manufactured by Briyosis product or company so I don't know.

I have read your website with great interest. I must provide my input about skeletal side effects of Avodart. There are definite side effects. I am 66 and have taken this medication for one year. I started to get severe back pains across the center of my pack - almost like back spasms. My urologist assured me it was not the the drug, but we agreed to go off the medication for 10 days. I am also an avid runner, which I thought might contribute to my pain - so I stopped running. After about a week, the pains subsided and went away. I started taking Avodart again two days ago and the pains / spasms immediately came back. There is definitely a causal effect of
Avodart and muscular/skeletal aches. I would appreciate some more research in this area as I cannot go on taking a medication that affects me this way. In addition, I have lost a significant amount of energy since taking this prostate medication. I hope this will help your research.

I’ve been reading your newsletter and information on Avodart. Most fascinating and informative!! One thing I didn’t see mentioned was severe rashes / blotches as a side effect. My husband has had the same problem with both Flomax and Avodart and his doctor seems to be at a loss to know what to do. Have others reported severe rashes (large, burning areas on legs and arms) from these products? Can you recommend any herbal supplements to counteract the rashes, or eliminate the prescriptions?
    My preference in treating a drug side effect is to eliminate the use of the drug rather than use something else to counteract it. I have not heard of rashes or skin problems associated with this medication, but it could be possible. You may wish to review the page on prostate health for additional informatin.

I recently visited my urologist regarding blood in my semen. He performed a prostate exam, ordered urine test, CT with contrast, and ultrasound. When all these appeared normal, i was prescribed Avodart. I have been reluctant to fill the prescription because I dislike taking meds, however, I am tired of this condition as is my wife. Have you heard of this prostate gland medication being prescribed in this manner and to what success. Thank you for your very informative web site.
    I am not familiar with the use of this prostate medication as a treatment for blood in the semen but I am not totally up to date with the uses of the thousands of medications available by prescription.

I was reading your report and was amazed to see many Avodart users complaining about should and back pains. I am a 36 year old healthy male who also has quite a story to tell. In July of 2009 after noticing significant male bald pattern hair loss 8 months prior, I decided to go ahead and start using Propecia which was prescribed by my doctor. 1 or 2 months into it I started feeling intense muscle back spasms and shoulder pain at the left joint primarily as well as some occasional neck pain. I originally thought that this was coming from back exercises at the gym which I have been going for 2 years now. I was diagnosed with some slight pinched nerves and back muscle spasms. I went for massage tharapy and the lady noticed some nerves were popping or something. Anyhow, we took xrays and everything and the Doctor gave me some Robax Platinum which worked like a charm. Al my pain was gone after a couple of days. I took around a total of 20 Robax pills. Than in January 2010 I got that same back pain but less severe, took some Robax and again it vanished. This March, 2010 I went to see another doctor to follow up on the Propecia, which I should mention I've regained at least 70-80% of my hair back (about 50% after 3 months) and he prescibed me Avodart and said a lot of his patients have been using it with great success. Well just 2 days into it, and I've managed to regain that left shoulder pain, which started by me lifting a small dog and holding it for about 300 meters, I got a pain on the left side of my heart, than 2 hours later it went to the left part of my back on the shoulder joint, and today as I woke up I have pain mostly in the middle part of my back. As I write this I am like a paralyzed person on my office chair. Question is: Should I take some Robax Platinum again, and give the Avodart 6 months until my body gets used to it. Also, I may be noticing slight muscle mass loss because I can barely gain anymore from the gym. Was this doctor wrong in prescribing Avodart since the Propecia was working just fine? Thanks for your time. Any answer appreciated.
    This is an interesting anecdote, however I am not in a position to offer specific advice. Unless I have examined a patient completely and done a thorough history and medical evaluation, it is not easy to accurately diagnose and treat.

I am 68 years of age, and have been taking Avodart and Uroxatral for BPH for about 18 months. I suffer from Herpes of the lip, usually mild, which usually lasts for about 10 hays. I have in fact controlled the outbreaks by taking about 3000 mg of Lysine daily, and have had no Herpes outbraek for about 2 years. However, due to the bad winter and snow, I must have strained my energy levels enough from shovelling snow, and in early February 2010 I was struck with Herpes. It is almost mid-April and I am still with my lower lip full of scales and inflamed. I am quite tempted to blame Avodart since it is the only thing that is different in my life. In one of the search items on the side effects of Avodart it clear states: "serious skin infections, hypersensitivity reactions, swelling of the lips. etc. Can you tell me if this is a possibbility?
    I have not seen any studies that indicate the use of this medication reduces the threshold for a herpetic infection or the use of the medication lowers the immune system, but there are many things that are not known about the long term effects of many pharmaceutical drugs.

I need help because I've developed ED problems and a Huge decrease in the size and shape of the libido after taking Avodart after only a short time, maybe two weeks. My doctor did not do any testing before prescribing this drug to me because I was having to get up so many times a night to urinate. He just assumed that I had a enlarged prostate and prescribed it after just talking to him about how much I was getting up a night? Can the side effects be corrected. I have been seeing a Urologist and receiving injections to try and straighten my penis with some success but far from what I use to be. I'm no longer taken injections. I know that he believes it's Peyronies disease and it may be but I think this medication brought this problem on. It started right after starting to take Avodart and never got any better, as a matter of fact it just got worse and worse. Can this be reversed or is it hopeless. I can't tell you how badly this is effecting me, I truly need help and was hoping you could help me. I can still get a erection and organism but I'm about half the size as I use to be and still have a large curvature along with not as firm, less semen and not as explosive if you know what I mean. This has killed my sex life partly because of what it done to my self esteem and what I have to work with. I use to be straight as a arrow and above average. Please help me if you can. Buy the way I'm 50 yrs old if that help to know my age.
    I can't give any specific advice but perhaps you could read the page on erectile dysfunction and review it with your doctor.

I was just reading your page on Avodart side effects. I am 28 years olda nd was prescribed this medication for periodic blood in the urine and semen... it was determined that the blood was coming from the prostate. At first the urologists thought that it was an infection. I had taken courses of strong anti-biotics over the period of a few years. The most recent diagnosis is that I may have a sensitive blood vessel in the prostate that is causing this to happen. I was told that the Avodart would help to reduce the size of prostate blood vessels. Is this true? Also, I am concerned about the long term side effects. I have only just started taking the medication. If I experience pain or impotence, will these symptoms disappear if I stop taking the drug? Thank you for your help. Feel free to post this question on your page. I noticed that another man was prescribed Avodart for blood in the semen.
    Usually any untoward effects from the medication would reverse a few days or weeks after stopping it. I have not studied the influence of this medication on blood vessels in the prostate but it does appear that most studies show it reduces the size of the gland.

I am 62 years old and have been taking Proscar 5 mg for several years for both enlarged prostate and hair loss. Reports indicate that Avodart / Dutasteride 2.5 mg may be more effective than Proscar / finasteride 5 mg for hair loss so I am considering switching from Proscar to Avodart. Is there a way to do this gradually or just stop Proscar one day and start taking Avodart the next? Does the Avodart become effective right away or should I expect hair loss because I stopped Proscar and the other medication takes time to become effective?
    This is a question for your doctor to answer since he or she knows your medical history best, but we have not had reports of adverse effects due to a switch of such medications. We have not seen studies that indicate how hair loss responds to a switch.

Have been taking Avodart for 2 months. Am a vigorous 74 year old who walks the golf course, HAD a vigorous sex life. After about a month on the drug started to experience pain in knees and muscle pain in legs and gait disturbance. This came on suddenly. Having read very similar e-mails on your site, I stopped taking the medication. After a few days pain subsided. To prove / disprove it was the drug I will start taking it again. Because of my age, I am sure I do not metabolize the drug as fast as a 50-60 year old and, logically, I would suffer more severe side effects. Perhaps I should only take it every other day. I understand its half life is more than 24 hours. About the sex life….prior to taking Avodart, my girl friend and I had a very active and satisfying sex life; Almost daily, and I had very firm erections. Thank you Cialis! After just 1 month on the Avodart I have to “overdose” on the Cialis to even have a so-so erection. I will see my urologist soon and talk “quality of life” issues with him. Flomax, once every other day, was doing the job just fine, prior. No urination problems whatever. Was put on the medication for a very enlarged prostate.

I am a chiropractic physician, with history of back pain, and BPH.i went out to colorado, (Regennex) to investigate stem cell injections for my torn discs, they drew cells from my iliac crest, and grew them out in an extract from my own blood, before they reinject the cells, into the disc, they do genetic testing for chromosonal abnormalities on the cultured, grown out cells, my cells failed this test, with abnormal chromosomal grow out. The docs at Regennex, after querying me, think that the Avodart could be the cause of this problem, I have since stopped the medication. Thanks for your site, useful for looking at unusual side effects, such as the musculo-skeletal pain complained of by several patients.

I am 64 and was taking Avodart for 14 months when I began having muscle spasms in my upper back and left shoulder for no apparent reason. I had no physical trauma to this area. The treatment was effective in shrinking my enlarged prostate by 32% after 12 months. I was taking the standard dose every other day. I stopped taking it. The pain began to subside. Four days later I experienced a day of extreme dizziness, nausea with vomiting for 7 hours, and falling to the left. I had to sit with head in hands and keep hydrating. The next day the dizziness eased and I could move around more and I began to sleep more comfortably. I lost a total of two days work. It is now two weeks after my withdrawal and my range of motion is 50% of normal with very little pain. I have had a definite increase of energy and a better emotional state. My urologist treated my report of this casually does not appear motivated to report my experience to the FDA or to the manufacturer.

I am a healthy 79-year-old male, who has been treated for almost 30 years for BPH. Because of my use of Warfarin, surgery has been ruled out (with the exception of microtherapy, which provided some relief from my urinary symptoms). My urologist had prescribed Avodart, which I took for about 15 months, resulting in a decrease of over 50% in the size of the prostate, after which it was discontinued as having produced its maximum effect. However, after a year without Avodart, my new urologist has prescribed it again, saying that the prostate may again increase in size and negative effects. Have you heard of this happening?
   A. The prostate gland does respond to Avodart, decreasing in size with its use and reversing when the medication is stopped.