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Is it safe to take saw palmetto instead of finestride for hair loss problem?

Dec 2013
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Practicing since : 2002
Answered : 4168 Questions
Hello im 22 yearls old male, Please a Dermatologist and hair specialist only answer not a general doctor thanks, i am using finestride over 1.5 month and my hair loss was very much before i use it and now are fantastic maybe 10 hair loss every time i go to bathroom (before was over 200) and my hair is also from tinny to strong hair and brown to black, i also take 2 biotin every day with 1 mg finestride but i heard it has side effect and only for 3 months is safe and someone suggested me saw palmetto that has same effect as finestride without side effects, is it right? and should i continue on finestride or stop and use saw palmeto? please tell me thank you
Posted Wed, 15 Jan 2014 in Skin Hair and Nails
Answered by Dr. Sanjay Kumar Kanodia 7 hours later
Brief Answer: Kindly see the suggestions below & give details Detailed Answer: Hi, Welcome and thanks for posting your query to healthcare magic. I can understand the concern for the hair fall. After thoroughly going through your your query and analyzing the details I can make out that your hair fall is related basically to "male pattern baldness" or "Androgenic alopecia". Before I come directly to you concern let me explain you some medical facts regarding hair fall. Medically telling you the facts- the number of hair falling normally varies from few hair to up to 50-100 per day. Now if your hair falling more than 100s per day then it is definitely a problem. If it is not then you have to understand hair fall as normal process of day to day life. We have almost 1 lac hair on our scalp and amongst them around 5% of hair are in falling phase and then another 0.1% (around 100) of hair can fall everyday. In males this is super-added with hormonal influence of testosterone hormone ( the male hormone) which we call as "male pattern baldness" or Androgenic alopecia The most important thing is not to be worried about this normal physiological age related men's problem. Finasteride is given along with nutrient supplements like biotin and calcium pantothenate with topical applications to reduce the effect of male hormones. We generally do not prefer Finasteride in married or sexually active males as can reduce your libido temporarily. It is not to be given beyond 9-12 months. Recently saw palmetto has shown very promising results as a good substitute therapy of Finasteride. It is a natural antiandrogen product without the side effects of Finasteride. But before I suggest you my too the point and best opinion I would like to know certain important things form your side. Kindly elaborate the problem in terms of - - Since how long you have the hair fall issue. - DO you see any bald patches on the front or side of scalp. It will be better if you can upload few pictures of your affected area. For that you have a feature to upload pictures on right side of your dashboard. - Are you taking Finasteride under a dermatological supervision or as self suggested therapy. - How is your family pattern; meaning pattern of hair in males of your father's and mothers side (any one suffering from baldness in your mother's side specifically) - Any history of substance abuse like smoking and or alcohol or any thing related. - Are you sexually active. - Do you eat healthy diet containing fruits and sprouts. - Your job profile and your daily routine. Hope to hear soon from your side to help and guide you best for your condition. With good health wishes, Dr Sanjay Kumar Kanodia MD- Dermatology
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Is it safe to take saw palmetto instead of finestride for hair loss problem? 3 hours later
Hello again Dr, i Uploaded many pictures, the pictures date that are 17/11/2013 is before i using finestride and i had bald spot on scalp like a big circle but the other picture date after 1.5 month in date (28/12/2013) after using finestride 1mg per day and 2 biotin 300 mikrogeram each, to answering your other questions: 1_i had suffering from hair loss at the age of 15 and even 14 and now i am 22. 2_bald patches on the scalp and a little in front as you can see in uploaded pictures 3_i use finestride 1mg per day under online doctor not a dermatologist area as i should go to a far city to meet a dermatologist. 4_ my father is bald from scalp and in front and my mother side are bald from scalp and in front too. 5_i dont use any alchohol or smoking never ever in my life. 6_i dont have any activity in sexuall just do masterbation few times a week. 7_my diet is not bad not good means average using fruits if availble every day if not few times a week . 8_i am student in university and i also got alot stress before now i made it very less than before very very less. i also provide you my blood test and thyroyid test that i got about 1.5 months ago. HORMON Specimen: Blood Test Result Unit Normal _______________ ______________ ______________ ______________ (T4(CLIA T4 7.95 ug,dl M:4.4-10.85 F:4.8-11.6 (TSH(CLIA TSH 1.91 UIu,ml 0.4-6.21 SEQ NO: 415 : < Reference > DATE:11-08-2013 TIME:11:08 : Low -- High Open Tube *RBC 5.29 10e6/uL : 4.00 - 5.50 HCT 42.8 % : 36.0 - 48.0 MCV 81 f1 : 80 - 100 *RDW 12.2 % : 11.5 - 14.5 HGB 13.8 g/DL : 12.0 - 16.5 MCH 26 pg : 26 - 34 MCHC 32.2 g/DL : 32.0 - 36.0 PLT 333 10e3/uL : 150 - 450 MPV 7.1 f1 : 5.4 - 10.8 WBC 5.3 10e3/uL : 3.8 - 9.8 LYM 1.9 : 1.2 - 3.5 LYM% 37 % : 20 - 48 MID 0.3 : 0.1 - 1.0 MID% 05 % : 02 - 10 GRA 3.1 : 1.4 - 7.0 GRA% 58 % : 42 - 80
Answered by Dr. Sanjay Kumar Kanodia 9 hours later
Brief Answer: Kindly follow the details below Detailed Answer: Hello young man, Welcome again to the forum and thanks for your further follow up and sending the picture and the important details to help you better. As you have started finasteride under the guidance of online doctor so I suggest you to take saw palmetto rather than finasteride.The side effects of finasteride are totally temporary but I am not in favor of oral finasteride at all. There is no problem in taking this medicine but in young men like you who are sexually active (if not at this time but any time in next few months) then it can reduce your libido temporarily. Though many a companies claim to be reversible side effects but I am personally not satisfied with the claiming. The reversibility sometimes takes few months of the period which is variable in all individuals. If you are really worried about the part of sexual functions then you can stop finasteride. It is the main issue where you can get stucked up. In any case you feel abnormality in sexual function then would need a dermatologist in person to counsel you properly till you get normal sexual function. In my view saw palmetto is a better and safer option to shift on. You can take this tablet for next 4-6 weeks and observe the difference. As I can notice from your pictures and from your history too that you have a tendency to get male pattern baldness and will progress in next few years. So considering this fact you have to take a long maintenance therapy. In this case a long term saw palmetto tablet would be more safer at this age of 22 years. Additionally I suggest you some important measure basically in form of diet to get better. 1. Eat at least 3-4 different fruits saplings per day. Every fruit is good but you can make a combination of sour with sweet fruits such as oranges, papaya and other of seasonal fruits. 2. Pulses are good source of proteins. So everyday have a small bowel full of mixed pulses. Add green leafy vegetables additionally in the pulses which contains lot of iron and vitamins in it. 3. Sprouts are the best source of fibers, minerals especially iron, vitamins and proteins too. so add it at-least alternate day if you can not make in every-day's part of meal. 4. Over night soaked and peeled almonds will give you good vitamin E which is good for the hair growth. 5. Milk and milk products should be included in every-day's schedule. I hope these information will help you. If you have any further queries I will be glad to help or if you do not then can close the query and rate the answer. Enjoy the weekend and the forthcoming new year ahead with best of health and wealth. Regards, Dr Sanjay Kumar Kanodia MD (Dermatology)
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Follow-up: Is it safe to take saw palmetto instead of finestride for hair loss problem? 1 hour later
Thank you very Much Dr, just for my last Questions, What Kind of Shampoo Should i use? and if i cut my hairs every month will it make Growing or stop hairfall as well ? and if i use finestride or saw palmetto for long term will it keep my hairs as long as i use this tablet? Thank you if you answer dr.
Answered by Dr. Sanjay Kumar Kanodia 14 minutes later
Brief Answer: Kindly follow the details below Detailed Answer: Hello young man, Welcome again to the forum and thanks for your further follow up. Regarding your further queries: Stick to any one of good branded shampoo which is suiting your hair, don’t change the shampoos frequently. There is no much of effect of shampoos in male pattern baldness. If you are using any conditioner also then to be used over the strands of hair only and not over the scalp skin. - Cutting of hair do nt make any difference. So do not have notion to get frequent cuts to reduce your hair fall. I many times see people getting bald to get good hair. But it is all a myth and scientifically it has not shown to get reduced hair fall or good growth after hair cut. Definitely the anti-androgenic affect of either of finasteride or saw palmetto will maintain good hair growth and prevent the further falling, but as I said earlier especially for finasteride to be taken under dermatological supervision in personal follow up with the doctor. I hope these information will help you. If you have any further queries I will be glad to help or if you do not then can close the query and rate the answer. Happy new year to you in advance. Regards, Dr Sanjay Kumar Kanodia MD (Dermatology)
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