Finasteride? What is and how does it work to prevent hair loss?

Finasteride is currently one of the most widely prescribed medications for hair loss treatment. It works by blocking the production of the androgen called DHT (dihydrotestosterone), the hormone responsible for hair loss in androgenetic alopecia.

For many years finasteride therapy, which blocks the enzyme 5- alpha reductase from converting testosterone into dihydrotestosterone (DHT), has become a mainstay to treat AGA.

Finasteride is an effective means to stabilize hair loss (85%) and in some cases to strengthen and re-grow lost hair (66%). However, it has been observed that in 1.85% of patients using finasteride, side effects of some sexual dysfunction, or breast tenderness or breast enlargement (gynecomastia). Though only 1.85% patients have these side effects, it deters hair loss patients.

Therefore, Genetic Test for Finasteride Response is a very useful test, because it helps in predicting if a patient will respond to Finasteride, and based on the results, Finasteride usage can be decided. In fact, we will suggest that you should not take Finasteride treatment without first taking our genetic test to know whether it will work for you or not.


Why should patients use the Genetic Test for Finasteride Response?

The Genetic Test for Finasteride Response test will predict if a patient will respond to the Finasteride treatment. Our clinic uses the latest Genetic Test for Finasteride Response, which helps to determine the degree of treatment response to finasteride, because some patients show only a subtle response, while some show great treatment response to finasteride. Therefore, you can provide your patients with the best treatment to save their hair.

The Genetic Test for Finasteride Response provides men with a score, called the “CAG repeat score”. A smaller CAG test score is associated with an increased response to Finasteride for treatment of androgenetic alopecia in men.

It has been observed that:

  • 70% of men with best response to Finasteride had a CAG score below 22
  • 70% of men with weak response to Finasteride had a CAG score above 22


How do you predict Finasteride Response?

The Androgen Receptor gene has been identified as a major determinant of Androgenetic Alopecia (AGA) or male pattern baldness. Certain variants of the nucleotide sequence on the Androgen Receptor gene, known as CAG repeats, appear to determine androgen sensitivity in men.

Lower numbers of CAG repeats have been associated with increased androgen sensitivity. This sensitivity and associated genotype have been associated with a myriad of physiologic effects.

It has been shown in 2 independent studies from 2 major research groups in Japan that a lower number of CAG repeats also impacts patient responsiveness to medication for AGA, for example Finasteride Response.

To learn more about hair loss genetic tests, or to schedule a test, please contact us.



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