It’s been a common belief that reductase inhibitor treatments such as Proscar (finasteride) or Avodart (dutasteride) were to blame for benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) patients experiencing erectile dysfunction.
However, new studies from researchers in the U.S. and Canada have found that rather than erectile dysfunction being a side effect of these medications, the increased risk was related to the length of time the patient was suffering from BPH.
Two separate studies were conducted: the first compared two groups of men aged 40 or older and treated them both for BPH. The men were treated with either a reductase inhibitor or an alpha-blocker (or both). Researchers found that men who were treated with just reductase inhibitors or in combination with alpha-blockers were no more likely to have erectile dysfunction than those who were treated with just alpha-blockers.
In the second group, men aged between 18 and 59 who were using finasteride or dutasteride for hair loss treatment were compared to men of the same age who were not taking medication for their hair loss. The risk of erectile dysfunction was the same in both groups. Read more about the study here.
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