Has anyone tried Saw Palmetto or fin after developing pfs?

First off, I have to be into work soon and I’ve searched the forum, this post will be quick.

I’ve seen one member say he took finasteride and achieved erections and was able to slowly taper off and essentially cure his ed (not sure about other sides) "

I was in a similar state as you describe for a full year after stopping. I noticed that if I took a small dose then stopped for a week or two I would get Moring wood again for a period until a “crash” when it went back to like before. I kept doing that and enjoying my week or 2 of erections at a time and eventually didn’t have to keep taking it anymore and was back close to normal. :Reddit source

Is it possible that if since/because 5ar receptors are downregulated to hell that cycling saw would upregulate these receptors? Assuming that our receptors got downregulated when we stopped taking fin and flooded our system.

It would seem to make some sense, according to the user who restored himself a bit. But before I try anything (especially because 5ar inhibitors scare me currently) Id like to know what collective experience we have here.

Apologies if this has been discussed.


As of 5/6/2018 I am taking 320 mg of Saw per day. One (160mg) capsule at morning, one at night. I will update this post every so often as I see fit to expand on occurrences:

5/7: Had a great day, more talkative and open than usual. Felt less fatigued. Could just be a good day.

5/8-9: Similar effects to previous days, perhaps feeling a little better each day.

5/10: Took a handful of SAW this night (Around 1600mgs). Felt much better the next day. Took none the day after. Sustained multiple hard erections with decent orgasms. Felt a little more “myself,” balls felt less inflamed and more normal.

Hey jjbunch,

It’s a very interesting observation and one going back over a decade that people with PFS can sometimes have their symptoms improve temporarily or, more rarely, permanently with 5 alpha reductase inhibitors or substances with anti androgenic properties. They can also dramatically worsen PFS and introduce a much more severe condition. People have claimed improvement by turmeric, zinc, progesterone, finasteride (in the case of an accutane case, which is likely the same condition), numerous fruits/extracts with 5ari properties. Basically most antiandrogenic substances. Another clear observation is a lot of people feel nothing or worsen with the administration of androgens. My testosterone level near doubled over the months following my crash, over which time I experienced significant erosion of androgenic tissues, which doesn’t make sense prima facie.

For example, since I wrote the above, @Ocguy posted the following in another topic:

problem is I can’t handle testosterone, even though it’s at the bottom range…Progesterone helps some I get sparks of libido but overall baseline is down another notch

When you talk of 5ar receptors, this is a bit off. The 5-alpha reductases are a family of enzymes, and although there are some direct receptor interactions (including direct modulation of the d2 dopamine receptor in the brain by the enzyme, which is interesting in itself), they don’t have a specific receptor. Instead, they’re involved in steroid reduction of androgens to lots of metabolites and other things such as metabolising cortisol for excretion and synthesis of bile acid. What was theorised and has now been proven is that the androgen receptor is over-expressing in PFS (2x vs control tissue), and there are numerous studies in hormone refectory cancers and straight animal modelling that show that AR overexpression leads to functional insensitivity and even cytotoxicity upon exposure to the hormone. Therefore it’s not unreasonable in my opinion to expect this is what we’re seeing when someone improves by lowering androgens, which of course 5ar inhibition will do. Unfortunately this is exactly how we got here in the first place and it has also made many people including myself permanently and severely worse. For six years I didnt know I had what then was a very mild PFS because I had solely digestive issues and fatigue, but on taking a dose of 0.25mg again I had a dreadful immediate reaction and crashed two days later developing all the worst PFS symptoms and ruining my life. So I would caution in the extreme against further 5ari usage because the risk is so great and unpredictable, like using finasteride in the first place really.

To answer your question specifically, one of the users with some permutation of the name “ihatefin” (unsurprisingly several people have gone for this name) seems to be remarkably resilient to further worsening via inhibition and has cycled saw, and used plenty of other anti-androgens and usually experiences an improvement to his symptoms. I believe soy flour is something he found the most effective. Everyone has to make their own decisions on the validity and risks of therapeutic attempts, but again I personally would strongly caution against this route myself, as it’s so easy for some of us to give ourselves a permanently worse PFS by messing with inhibition of the AR given that we currently do not know what is driving the over-expression or its failure to re-calibrate upon the return of androgens.


I your testo doubled and you got more sides, it is a sign of AR. Body notices that androgens cannot target receptors and therefore firstly raise testo production in order to get an effect.
I had the same situation. But my testo levels went down. Felt better.
This all happened due to increased number of receptors.

I wonder if raising dht for several weeks and then suddenly stopping could help.
Why? Receptors will be still closed on higher dht level, but will recognise the sudden falling dht level and probably will accept the new (but old) dht baseline AS normal and reopen.
It might be not the absolute level being important for receptors. It could be the progress up or down. What do you think?

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This is quite interesting.

If I understand correctly, decreasing androgens via Fin leads to overexpression of the receptor. After we quit Fin, androgens come back in full force and hit overexpressed receptors resulting in some kind of shut down. That leads to several questions. Why doesn’t receptor expression go back to baseline with the return of androgens to baseline? What can we do to “repress” receptors?

Since the overexpressed receptors were “overwhelmed” by the return of androgens, reducing androgens theoretically should improve the situation, although inhibiting 5ar again, of course, has other problems (neurosteroids). Maybe reducing androgens again and then reintroducing them slowly (unlike with Fin) may be helpful to give the receptor room to adjust. But it’s incredibly risky. I am not willingy to try that. Anyway, it’s also possible that we blew something up in the whole feedback mechanism that may not be (positively) influenced by in-/decrease in androgens in any way, which is what we observe.

I am stil trying to understand all that. It would be interesting to know if there is any (save) way to reduce AR overexpression.

It does lead to the first question, yes. I wish I knew. Hopefully the forthcoming study will give us some clues. The italian study noted that it was remarkable that the androgen receptor was over-expressing this much an average of five years after stopping, so something is keeping it this way. It’s just far beyond the realm of guessing as to what, sadly. I know that sucks in terms of what to do, what to try etc, but maybe we’ll have a better chance at working something therapeutic out depending on what the results show. That would be very nice.

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Oops, you are correct! Substitute “receptors” for “enzymes” in my post haha (although I was talking about the regulation of the receptors post enzyme inhibition). But I did buy some Saw yesterday and I took one dose of it last night and one this morning. I hope to see some kind of improvement by cycling it one week at a time. If I see no improvement (conditions stay the same but don’t worsen) I will up the dose and do another cycle after. So, at the very least I’ll update this thread to tell you gents what happens.

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Will be interesting to hear, and here’s hoping you are ok

I know from stories from other users that raising dht levels caused them to feel better for a short period of time before ultimately crashing harder than before. (They use proviron).

In order to upregulate receptors you actually need to decrease androgens. This is how Sulbutiamine works (a dopamine agonist). It reduces the amount of dopamine and therefore upregulates dopamine receptors.

That is why taking saw/fin may be beneficial. This would decrease the amount of androgens and upregulate receptors. But, this is only my theory as it would theoretically cause more test and estrogen to enter the system and possibly downregulate the receptors for each, but only for a short time if cycled. The goal would be to increase receptors for dht ultimately.

It could work. It could also not work. Everything is always a running theory until tested.

This is risky. Good luck and keep us updated!

Many THX for your reply.

jjbunch, This has to be one of the absolute worst ideas I have ever heard. You stand to hurt yourself much more by messing with Saw. You must have no concept of how bad this condition can get. Anyone cheering on this type of experimentation is asinine. There are people on this board in a real bay way due to Saw. It can be just as bad as fin & sometimes worse. Some of the suicides were from Saw. I suggest you stop immediately. The data coming back on these 5ar blockers is absolutely horrific. 5ar blockers damage the brain. steer clear! You are on the wrong path and it should be obvious.


Yes, but what you’re presenting is absolutely not what you want to happen and is why this is a bad idea. We have a proven significant upregulation of the AR already, and that’s likely why further 5ar inhibition can sometimes give a temporary improvement followed by an eventual worsening. As this is what caused the issue in the first place, and as MCI says the risk is huge, I thought I’d better point this out.

my condition came from finasteride, I’ve lived long enough with these effects. Something as trivial as saw doesn’t phase me anymore. I’ll update this post with how it goes. Just take me as an experiment to cure a cause. Nothing more.

Why not try homeopathetic dilluted finasteride? I think SP is far more dangerous

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Update: (I will also add this information to the top post)

I tried Saw for 3 days, one dose of 160mg in the morning, one at night.

Over the course of the three days, I seemed to wake up just a little happier. A little less anxiety, a little more “myself.” I was by no means cured and it did little to nothing for libido.

(impatience warning, please do not do as I did): Two days ago I swallowed a ton of Saw. Probably at least ten capsules, around 1600 mgs. I slept well and woke up feeling revitalized. (It should also be known that I have been acclimating to a new work schedule which may have been slightly why I felt better waking up). I had an erotic dream, something I hadn’t had for a while. Also, for the interested, early in the days I masturbated. It was nothing crazy. Later that night, my erection and orgasm were back nearly full force. It was such a sweet sight to see my dick was not permanently smaller than prefs.

Anyway, I didn’t take any saw that night, fearing I might overdo it after taking such a handful the day before. Today, I woke up feeling fine. I went to work, did my shit, felt no fatigue and little brain fog. My balls felt much different as well. Instead of feeling somewhat inflamed, they felt like they were full of semen. A nice sensation. I later masturbated and had an even better erection which took little stimulation to keep and granted me a nice orgasm.

We are all used to people reporting their sexual effects, but I do apologize for masturbatory talk. It just feels kind of weird.

Anyway, this could all be placebo for what I know. I could be awaiting another crash as we speak, so I don’t want anyone to try this yet but I do feel there is some promise to upregulating via inhibition cycling.

I will continue this experiment and see what follows. I also am fond of administering SAW at night as I feel the body does most of it’s recovering at night, perhaps recovering aspects of the neurons and steroids of the brain more efficiently during sleep. Anyways, I will stop for now and post when I have additional content. Thanks for reading.

Taking fin/saw/or any other 5AR inhibitor will do the same things. I think this route should only be used if you’re completely impotent because you’ve already hit the bottom in that regard. There’s a guy named Cheerburglar on reddit who improved his libido/erections by taking fin over and over again. He didn’t return to normal but he improved. You can read all about in this thread I made: Using Fin To Replace Androgens?

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I agree that you may only wish to pursue this route if you’ve hit rock bottom. Also, thank you for providing the original quote, I knew I had seen it before but I could not find it. Cheeseburglar and a few other accounts are compelling enough for me to try it. I would advise no one else try it unless they are fully aware nothing good may come from it.

I also wish to provide some support to people suffering if it does help me. Add another data point.

I stated this in my thread too, but just be aware you may have hit rock bottom in terms of sexual side effects but you can always get new side effects in other parts of the body. For example you could get tinnitus and there’s no cure for that once you get it. So it’s still really risky. I believe I read in old posts on this forum that you can go from “life being annoying with side effects” to “I want to kill myself” so it really is a last resort.

And there have been people who have recovered from sexual side effects years after they quit just by doing nothing. So I’d advise waiting a few years before taking finasteride again if you’re new to PFS.

Feels great again today. I took 6 capsules last night, I feel fine, even somewhat aggressive. I’m going to stop posting here for some time because I’m getting sick of being told “you shouldn’t do this” or that from people that don’t seem to have gone the route I am taking currently.

I will report back maybe in a few weeks or months. Good luck to all suffering and here’s to hoping things look up.


Good luck and let us know how it went!