The drug Propecia is commonly used to treat hair loss. However, it does have a number of side effects that might be worrisome, including permanent sexual dysfunction. Among the most common side effects for Propecia are decreased libido, erectile dysfunction, and ejaculation disorder, all affecting men’s sexual health in very negative ways. Otherwise healthy men are experiencing these issues, with these problems persisting for an average of 40 months after treatment has ceased, according to a study conducted by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Propecia is based on a synthetic compound known as finasteride. Finasteride was developed by the pharmaceutical company Merck & Co. in the early 1990s. Alhough finasteride was originally used to treat enlarged prostate glands, doctors found that one of the side effects of its use was hair growth. Though it entered the marketplace to much acclaim with more than 400,000 Americans taking it in its first year, clinical trials revealed a list of sexual side effects that the company long tried to hide. Perhaps the most startling find in these clinical trials related to the sexual side effects of Propecia was that even after a user stopped taking the drug, the side effects remained. In some cases, sexual function never returned to normal.