My story took finasteride while having pfs

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)?
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?)
What is your current age, height, weight?
22, 6’1”, 175
What specific drug did you use (finasteride, dutasteride, saw palmetto, isotretinoin/Accutane, fluoxetine, sertraline, citalopram, leuprorelin, etc…)?
What dose did you take (eg. 1 mg/day, 1 mg every other day etc.)?
1 mg
What condition was being treated with the drug?
For how long did you take the drug (weeks/months/years)?
3 weeks September 2022, 1 week December 2022
Date when you started the drug?
Date when you quit the drug?
Age when you quit?
How did you quit (cold turkey or taper off)?
Cold Turkey
How long into your usage did you notice the onset of side effects?
1 week first time, 1 day second time
What side effects did you experience that have yet to resolve since discontinuation?

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.

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

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

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

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

[ ] Other (please explain)

What (if any) treatments have you undertaken to recover from your side effects since discontinuation of the drug?
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)?
Absurdly low testosterone, low vitamin d
Anything not listed in the above questions you’d like to share about your experience?

Tell us your story, in your own words, about your usage and side effects experienced while on/off the drug.
I took finasteride in September knowing that there was bad side effects, but I stupidly thought that if it went poorly and if I went off the drug I’d be fine. I also fell into the Reddit pipeline that worships this drug and saw people downplaying pfs, so I thought it would be nothing to worry about. I took the drug and got side effects but my doctor on Keeps said that they usually go away so I kept on, but I had such bad brain fog that I decided it wasn’t worth it after 3 weeks and went off. During the initial period, I had bad brain fog, ED, insomnia, and felt really weak. After I went off, symptoms resolved pretty quickly until about 2 weeks later when I started feeling terrible. The problem was that it was all energy and mental side effects, and at the time I thought pfs was only ED. I also had a friend die during this time so I thought that was why I was so depressed. But I stayed depressed for a really long time. I also had a really bad scalp itch I couldn’t get rid of. Finally I thought maybe I was depressed because of my hairloss, and so I tried topical finasteride. Little did I know I had pfs, and I was about to make it worse. Once I took the topical I realized that the finasteride had been the issue as I developed worse side effects. My penis hurt, my balls hurt, I had complete anhedonia, really bad memory issues, and I had no energy whatsoever. My heart rate was also insanely high. I looked into it and figured out it was finasteride, but not after meeting with tons of doctors who just told me I was depressed. I knew it was a physical issue though, since my armpits smelled really weird. Anyway, one doctor, even though she didn’t help, had the foresight to look at my testosterone, which was absurdly low. Eventually I got an appointment with a doctor listed on the pfs website, and he prescribed me clomid. I was taking clomid for the past 3 weeks and it was helping, but I was getting bad side effects so I had to stop. It’s been 3 days since then, and I’m retiring to my pfs baseline. My muscles are really weak, my penis is numbing again. I don’t really know what to do. I may try trt next, but it seems it’s up to fate whether I get better or not. Obviously I feel really stupid trying finasteride in the first place, even when I knew some of the risks, and I feel even stupider that I tried it again. Hopefully I haven’t sealed my fate. It’s now been 10 weeks since I last took it and I don’t have much hope. The doctor I’m working with basically says to give it 6 months, and if it doesn’t resolve by then it’s probably not going to. Anyway, that’s kind of it. I can’t believe this is happening, I didn’t know a person could ever feel like this, especially from a drug that seemed so safe. It’s just so tragic that my arrogance and desperation about hairloss got the best of me and may have ruined my life. I hope I get a second chance. I don’t know anymore.

  1. Name of the therapy/substance:
    • Dosage:
    • How often you took it:
  2. Status
    • Still using [ ]
    • Stopped with no lasting change to initial symptoms [ ]
    • Stopped with persistent change to symptoms [ ]
  3. Duration of use: Days [ ] Months [ ] Years [ ]
  4. Response when you started:
    • Greatly improved [ ]
    • Slightly improved [ ]
    • Stayed the same [ ]
    • Slightly worsened [ ]
    • Greatly worsened [ ]
  5. Current response (if you’re still using the therapy/substance) OR Response in the time before you stopped the treatment
    • Greatly improved [ ]
    • Slightly improved [ ]
    • Stayed the same [ ]
    • Slightly worsened [ ]
    • Greatly worsened [ ]
  6. Lasting changes to initial symptoms after cessation (if you have stopped for more than 3 weeks)
    • Greatly improved [ ]
    • Slightly improved [ ]
    • Stayed the same [ ]
    • Slightly worsened [ ]
    • Greatly worsened [ ]

Edited because I’ve noticed more symptoms, really concerned because I seem to be a very severe case. If any one with symptoms like mine has recovered please give some hope.

It’s really sad because I had a much milder case of pfs last fall, mostly just cognition issues and muscle weakness, and I probably would have recovered by now, but I just didn’t put it together and unfortunately the pfs made me even more anxious about my hairloss to the point where I was willing to try again. It feels like some kind of tragic fable.

Something that might be an interesting data point is the first couple days I went back on finasteride, I actually felt a lot better. Not sure why this is, maybe my testosterone was raised temporarily? I know in retrospect I had low testosterone, and I do now even more so, given some pictures of me where I was starting to have the pot belly. And now I have even more of one.

Hey mate,

Sorry you landed here.

If you can provide a rundown of the symptoms concerning you the most, I may be able to help ease your mind.

I mean, cognition and sexual function are the most concerning I think. As well as suicidal thoughts. If my mind were clear I could make it through this easily I think, but because it’s not it’s just really hard.

1 Like

Those types of symptoms are quite common during a crash and should ease up over the next three months. Fight the suicidal thoughts by telling yourself this is temporary. All you can really do is ride it out. Stay away from all pharmaceuticals and supplements, and try to distract yourself. This forum is here for you if you need help.


Welcome to the gulag.

Id hold out hope. Lot of the symptoms I had at 10 weeks improved and I am now at 15 months.

1 Like

Just checking in to see how you are doing now?