Can Propecia side effects lead to severe depression?

18/03/2015

Desperate young man in silhouette holding his head

Propecia, the well-known drug which is prescribed by GPS to help alleviate hair loss has been at the centre of a lawsuit in America following the suicide of an unnamed person who was prescribed the drug. Already Propecia has had bad press and warnings linked to it concerning sexual side effects and now the drug which includes the ingredient Finistride also has to give clear warnings about side effects of depression. There is also a fear that suicidal ideation is a side effect too.

The lawsuit against Propecia

It was the consumer rights lawyer Hagens Berman who filed the first-of-its-kind lawsuit against the makers of the hair loss drug Merck and Co. It appears that the drug was approved by the FDA (in America) in 1997 and at this time it was recognised that side effects could include decreased libido, ejaculation problems and erectile dysfunction. And this was stated clearly on packaging. However the fact that it could affect an individual’s mood was not taken into account and so there was no warnings on the packaging. Warnings were not added to the list of side effects until 2010.

It appears that the person taking Propecia (from 2008) and who remained anonymous in the court case fell into a deep depression and experienced suicidal ideation. Even though he refrained from taking the drug in 2012, shortly afterwards he committed suicide. However the prosecution pointed out that even though side effects on the packaging point to a possibility of depressed mood they fail to clarify that there can be suicidal ideation.

Warnings on packages have led to a fall in sales

A survey has shown that since appropriate warnings have been introduced on the packaging of Propecia, sales of the drug in America have almost fallen by 50% ($447 million in 2011 to $264 million in 2014).

Scientific tests back up fears concerning suicidal ideation post-prescription

In 2012, Dr Michael Irwig of George Washington University in Washington, D.C. recruited 61 men who had taken the drug Finistride for hair loss and had since refrained from using it. All men had had adverse sexual side effects. He also used a control group of 29 men who had hair loss issues but never used Finistride nor had any known psychiatric conditions.

A total of 39 % of the former Finistride users reported having thoughts of suicide, and 5 percent agreed with the statement, “I would like to kill myself.”

In contrast, only one of the controls reported suicidal thoughts.

Everyone of course will react to drugs in a different way. In most cases side effects are rare but they should be taken into account so patients will be aware of symptoms and be able to respond immediately to any issues.

Be aware. Be careful.

At Skalp™ we care about you. We care about hair. To find out more about Micro Pigmentation click here

 [:it]Desperate young man in silhouette holding his head

Propecia, the well-known drug which is prescribed by GPS to help alleviate hair loss has been at the centre of a lawsuit in America following the suicide of an unnamed person who was prescribed the drug. Already Propecia has had bad press and warnings linked to it concerning sexual side effects and now the drug which includes the ingredient Finistride also has to give clear warnings about side effects of depression. There is also a fear that suicidal ideation is a side effect too.

The lawsuit against Propecia

It was the consumer rights lawyer Hagens Berman who filed the first-of-its-kind lawsuit against the makers of the hair loss drug Merck and Co. It appears that the drug was approved by the FDA (in America) in 1997 and at this time it was recognised that side effects could include decreased libido, ejaculation problems and erectile dysfunction. And this was stated clearly on packaging. However the fact that it could affect an individual’s mood was not taken into account and so there was no warnings on the packaging. Warnings were not added to the list of side effects until 2010.

It appears that the person taking Propecia (from 2008) and who remained anonymous in the court case fell into a deep depression and experienced suicidal ideation. Even though he refrained from taking the drug in 2012, shortly afterwards he committed suicide. However the prosecution pointed out that even though side effects on the packaging point to a possibility of depressed mood they fail to clarify that there can be suicidal ideation.

Warnings on packages have led to a fall in sales

A survey has shown that since appropriate warnings have been introduced on the packaging of Propecia, sales of the drug in America have almost fallen by 50% ($447 million in 2011 to $264 million in 2014).

Scientific tests back up fears concerning suicidal ideation post-prescription

In 2012, Dr Michael Irwig of George Washington University in Washington, D.C. recruited 61 men who had taken the drug Finistride for hair loss and had since refrained from using it. All men had had adverse sexual side effects. He also used a control group of 29 men who had hair loss issues but never used Finistride nor had any known psychiatric conditions.

A total of 39 % of the former Finistride users reported having thoughts of suicide, and 5 percent agreed with the statement, “I would like to kill myself.”

In contrast, only one of the controls reported suicidal thoughts.

Everyone of course will react to drugs in a different way. In most cases side effects are rare but they should be taken into account so patients will be aware of symptoms and be able to respond immediately to any issues.

Be aware. Be careful.

At Skalp™ we care about you. We care about hair. To find out more about Micro Pigmentation click here

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