My life is ruined with only 3 doses of finasteride [Update3: Possibly recovering again]

Welcome to our community. Please fill in the following template as a way of introducing yourself, and helping others to understand your background and situation.

Where are you from (country)?
USA

How did you find this forum (Google search – if so, what search terms? Via link from a forum or website – if so, what page? Other?)
Google

What is your current age, height, weight?
27, 5’6, 164 lbs

What specific drug did you use (finasteride, dutasteride, saw palmetto, isotretinoin/Accutane, fluoxetine, sertraline, citalopram, leuprorelin, etc…)?
Finasteride

What dose did you take (eg. 1 mg/day, 1 mg every other day etc.)?
1 md/day

What condition was being treated with the drug?
Hairloss

For how long did you take the drug (weeks/months/years)?
3 days

How old were you, and WHEN (date) did you start the drug?
27

How old were you when you quit, and WHEN (date) did you quit?
27

How did you quit (cold turkey or taper off)?
Cold Turkey

How long into your usage did you notice the onset of side effects?
2 hours

What side effects did you experience that have yet to resolve since discontinuation?

  • Insomnia
  • Fever
  • Dry coughs
  • Libido
  • Weaker erections

Check the boxes that apply. You can save your post first, then interactively check/uncheck the boxes by clicking on them. If your symptoms change, please update your list.

Sexual
Loss of Libido / Sex Drive
Erectile Dysfunction
Complete Impotence
Loss of Morning Erections
Loss of Spontaneous Erections
Loss of Nocturnal Erections
Watery Ejaculate
Reduced Ejaculate
Inability or Difficulty to Ejaculate / Orgasm
Reduced Sperm Count / Motility

Mental
Emotional Blunting / Emotionally Flat
Difficulty Focusing / Concentrating
Confusion
Memory Loss / Forgetfulness
Stumbling over Words / Losing Train of Thought
Slurring of Speech
Lack of Motivation / Feeling Passive / Complacency
Extreme Anxiety / Panic Attacks
Severe Depression / Melancholy
Suicidal Thoughts

Physical
Penile Tissue Changes (narrowing, shrinkage, wrinkled)
Penis curvature / rotation on axis
Testicular Pain
Testicular Shrinkage / Loss of Fullness
Genital numbness / sensitivity decrease
Weight Gain
Gynecomastia (male breasts)
Muscle Wastage
Muscle Weakness
Joint Pain
Dry / Dark Circles under eyes

Misc
Prostate pain
Persistent Fatigue / Exhaustion
Stomach Pains / Digestion Problems
Constipation / “Poo Pellets”
Vision - Acuity Decrease / Blurriness
Tinnitus (ringing or high pitched sound in ears)
Hearing loss
Increased hair loss
Frequent urination
Lowered body temperature

Other (please explain)

What (if any) treatments have you undertaken to recover from your side effects since discontinuation of the drug?

None

If you have pre or post-drug blood tests, what hormonal changes have you encountered since discontinuing the drug (please post your test results in the “Blood Tests” section and link to them in your post)?

Nope

Anything not listed in the above questions you’d like to share about your experience?

Nope

Tell us your story, in your own words, about your usage and side effects experienced while on/off the drug.

I took finasteride almost 3 weeks ago. Immediately after I took my first dose, I felt dizzy, had a huge headache, had short-term memory issues, breast pain, ball ache and huge hair shed.

I got off the dose 20 days ago.

First week off fin was fine and symptoms improved. However, 1 week after my last dose, I started getting erection problems, insomnia, increased scalp itch and increased hair loss.
I also have a huge fever and dry coughs 3-4 days ago and took tylenol.

Currently, the scalp itch and hair loss have stopped and I’m not certain if they stopped due to the fever and/or tylenol.

I still suffer from sleeping problems and erection issues, and neither of these issues appear to be improving. For the past 4 or 5 days, I’ve only been sleeping 1-3 hours per night. I know I should be tired, but I’m not. I know that something isn’t right about my body.
A couple of nights ago, I had trouble sleeping due to night sweats. Then the next night, my body felt hot even when it wasn’t. I’m not sure how to explain it.

I just lost all faith. I can’t believe I did this to myself.


Update:
I wanted to wait a bit before I posted this, but right now, I’m about 80-90% recovered. Recovery happened about a week ago. Don’t know why.

  • My hair is shedding far, far less. Almost like pre-fin. I think some of it is growing back, too. I 100% think I had telogen effluvium caused by finasteride. My hair texture completely changed the day after I took fin.
  • My scalp is itching far, far less than last month. I still get the odd zits on my scalp for some reason. Hope they go away soon.
  • My insomnia has massively improved. I can stay asleep for 6-8 hours a night. Sometimes I wake up in the middle, but I go right back to sleep. Yesterday, I was able to fall asleep for 2 hours (5 PM - 7 PM) immediately after masturbating, then fall asleep from 12 AM to 7 AM.
  • My weight has stabilized around 158-162 lbs.
  • My stomach doesn’t hurt anymore. My stools look a bit weird sometimes, but they’re a massive improvement from what they were last month.
  • Tinnitus still comes and goes. I get maybe 1 or 2 small ringings every day.
  • My dick and libido are around 60-90% recovered.

Hope I don’t relapse. People here talk about a zig-zag recovery, and I definitely believe this is true. I recovered a bit the first month off fin, but then crashed again. Now I recovered past the initial recovery.

To everyone reading this, please don’t give up. I was in a very dark place a few weeks ago, but now I’m doing better.

I will be getting another blood and urine test in a few weeks to see if everything stabilized.

If anyone is wondering, I had a very clean diet for the past 2 months. No processed food, no refined sugar (Except low fat yogurt). I also didn’t exercise at all, because I didn’t want to stress my body.

Also, I realized that my hair loss seemed more like female pattern hairloss than male pattern hairloss. I’m actually upset that my derm didn’t catch that.
I’m suspecting that my severe Vitamin D deficiency and high sugar diet either caused or accelerated my hair loss in the past 3 years. I’m curious if my hair will come back once I fix my vitamin deficiencies and my horrendous diet.

2 Likes

Hi @WorriedGuy123,
I’m sorry you are going through this. Time is definitely on your side right now. You can still clear these side effects. Try not to stress about this , stress feeds PFS. Breathe. Give yourself 3 months to see if you still have these or other symptoms. Live clean. Don’t drink or smoke, go to the gym/pool. Keto/paleo diet helps. Don’t do vitamins or supplements as let your body heal from the assault itself. We are all here for you so check in, read and ask questions. We are a community, you are not alone. This is not your fault. That medicine poisons people.

These two symptoms are not PFS symptoms - people do get hot flashes/flushes but of greater concern right now is that a fever and dry, persistent cough are the primary symptoms of Covid-19 infection.

Prioritise monitoring of that. Make sure people close to you know that you have symptoms of Covid-19 and that you are not in a position to spread it further, if you are infected.

1 Like

On topic, this is my experience too, I took 5 doses. With time it has got better. I can expect 6 hours most nights now, sometimes more, sometimes less. It can get better. Things aren’t as good as they were on any given day but sexually things are good from time to time and my baseline is that I’m still functional. The first couple of months were terrible. It will be a hard road that you’re on with us. The one thing that recoveries have in common is time, and unfortunately you’ll have to wait it out.

It’s now been 4 weeks since I took my last finasteride pill.

Here are some updates about my symptoms:

  • I now can fall asleep more easily than before. No longer am I staying awake in bed for longer than 30 minutes.
  • I can sleep ~6 hours without waking up
  • My scalp itches very slightly, almost like my pre-fin days
  • My hairs is shedding a lot less
  • My appetite is a lot better. I can eat a bit more without feeling full.

My libido is still pretty low. This is the one thing that hasn’t improved the past 4 weeks.
Hoping that my shed hairs grow back and that my libido improves.

Hey, guys.

So a little update.

I noticed that I’m getting slight stomach/abdominal aches.
My poops also turned yellow.
I think it has to do with the barley grass powder I’ve been drinking.
I will quit drinking for a week to see if there are any improvements.

Another update:

Last night, I was able to achieve a nocturnal erection, which is the first in 3-4 weeks.

However, I’m concerned about my digestive problems. My stools look a bit yellow with food scraps on them. ANyone know what this could be?

I also have poop pellets. My stomach also makes grumbling noises.
I also don’t feel hungry anymore.

How are you feeling now? Firmly on the road to recocery I hope

Hah, not even close.

I’m having some major digestive issues: Diarrhea after every meal; yellow, floating stools; massive weight and muscle loss.

I feel my body isn’t absorbing any fats and nutrients, and it’s cascading into a whole bunch of other problems. I got a basic blood test, which revealed elevated ALT. I then got a abdominal sonogram, which showed nothing unusual. I’m still waiting for the results of my other blood and stool tests.
It just keeps getting worse and worse for me.

I’m almost 100% sure my problems are connected with my gut, but I don’t know why my gut is freaking out.

My abdominal aches mostly went away, but I had eat only brown rice for several days. I no longer shoot poop pellets; instead, I crap out long, mushy yellow-ish stools. Not sure if that’s an improvement.

I also believe that drinking that barley grass powder for a week caused most of my new problems.

Hello, everyone.

I’m not doing much better than last time. I will try taking a break from these forums to reflect on my life. I might want to take one last hiking trip with my family before my muscles degenerate too much.
Good bye for now. I hope you are all doing well, but I think this is the end for me. I don’t have much hope for recovery,.

I am new to this forum, keep us updated, how about your tinnitus? did it improve?

The tinnitus still comes. Maybe not as frequently as before. Can’t say for certain.

It’s now been almost 2 months since I quit finasteride. I’m still suffering. These 2 months have been the hardest months of my life. I don’t know if I’ll ever get better.

i am in the same boat as you brother, currently 3 weeks have passed and more symptoms seem to have arised (dry eyes, joint pain). I was just wondering if things did diminish a little bit since more weeks have passed for you…

It’s hard to say. I hope to come back with better news to give you hope.
Best of luck to you, Casual. This may be a long and tough road for us.

I wanted to wait a bit before I posted this, but right now, I’m about 80-90% recovered. Recovery happened about a week ago. Don’t know why.

  • My hair is shedding far, far less. Almost like pre-fin. I think some of it is growing back, too. I 100% think I had telogen effluvium caused by finasteride. My hair texture completely changed the day after I took fin.
  • My scalp is itching far, far less than last month. I still get the odd zits on my scalp for some reason. Hope they go away soon.
  • My insomnia has massively improved. I can stay asleep for 6-8 hours a night. Sometimes I wake up in the middle, but I go right back to sleep. Yesterday, I was able to fall asleep for 2 hours (5 PM - 7 PM) immediately after masturbating, then fall asleep from 12 AM to 7 AM.
  • My weight has stabilized around 158-162 lbs.
  • My stomach doesn’t hurt anymore. My stools look a bit weird sometimes, but they’re a massive improvement from what they were last month.
  • Tinnitus still comes and goes. I get maybe 1 or 2 small ringings every day.
  • My dick and libido are around 60-90% recovered.

Hope I don’t relapse. People here talk about a zig-zag recovery, and I definitely believe this is true. I recovered a bit the first month off fin, but then crashed again. Now I recovered past the initial recovery.

To everyone reading this, please don’t give up. I was in a very dark place a few weeks ago, but now I’m doing better.

I will be getting another blood and urine test in a few weeks to see if everything stabilized.

If anyone is wondering, I had a very clean diet for the past 2 months. No processed food, no refined sugar (Except low fat yogurt). I also didn’t exercise at all, because I didn’t want to stress my body.

Also, I realized that my hair loss seemed more like female pattern hairloss than male pattern hairloss. I’m actually upset that my derm didn’t catch that.
I’m suspecting that my severe Vitamin D deficiency and high sugar diet either caused or accelerated my hair loss in the past 3 years. I’m curious if my hair will come back once I fix my vitamin deficiencies and my horrendous diet.

6 Likes

Hey thanks so much for the update. That’s awesome news. I had a little bit of a panic attack yesterday and am feeling anxious still today and reading this made me feel a little better. My path has been similar, ups and downs all the way. I hope you keep riding this upswing all the way!

Hi, Welllshoot.

Hope you’re doing better.
I also had 2 episodes of panic attacks after I quit fin. Then for 5-6 weeks straight, I had elevated heart rates and heart palpitations. I think something is wrong with our cortisol and adrenaline levels.

Thankfully, my heart rate stabilized, and then everything else started to improve a couple of weeks after that. I think if you’re suffering from any symptom that affects the heart, you need to avoid any kind of stressor including caffeine and exercise.

Fuck yeah glad you’re on the way to recovery. Just remember don’t ever be tempted to take anything antiandrogenic again, I think that reexposure is often the nail in the coffin for so many. Good luck!

Yeah. I feel the one thing I’ll never get over after this experience is second-guessing every little thing I’m eating or drinking.

I used to drink 3 cups of green tea every day, but now I drink only 1. No coffee, too.

I’m doing better in some areas, others not so much. I have been experiencing that elevated heart rate you were talking about. I’ve been avoiding caffeine, but I do think I need to be more diligent about diet to give my body the best chance of recovery. What was your diet like for the past 2 months?